The Space Launch System (SLS) is based on the American heavy expendable launch vehicle SLS. It was previously based on the Ares IV and V rockets that were supposed to launch the Orion Crew Exploration Vehicle, which was redesigned and became what we know today as the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle (MPCV).

The cancellation of the Constellation Program and the subsequent restructuring of the program is what led to the design selection by NASA of what would be known as the SLS.

The SLS is aimed at replacing NASA's Space Shuttle because it has been deemed cheaper to manufacture and easier to manage than the aging Shuttle program. Planned uses for it thus far include: launching astronauts to the ISS, returning man to the Moon, and sending interplanetary manned spacecraft to Mars.

The SLS is comprised of:

SLS EM-1 Launch Animation

SLS EM-1 Launch Animation


  • The Exploration Upper Stage is a large 2nd stage in real life, but has not been added to the game.
  • The SLS prior to 1.5.0 was the white variant of the SLS.


Name Block Crew Date Status Duration Destination Purpose
EM-1 1 Crew No June 2020 Scheduled 1 month Lunar orbit Send Orion capsule on trip around Moon. Deploy 6 CubeSats
EC 1 Cargo No 2022 Proposed Jovian orbit Flagship-class robotic mission to explore Europa
EM-2 1 Crew Yes (4) June 2022 Scheduled 8-21 days Lunar flyby First crewed Orion capsule
EM-3 1B Crew Yes (4) 2023 Planned 16-26 days Lunar halo orbit Deliver Deep Space Habitat (DSH) module to the Lunar Orbital Platform-Gateway (LOP-G)
EM-4 1B Crew Yes (4) 2025 Planned 26-42 days Lunar orbit Deliver logistics to LOP-G
EM-5 1B Crew Yes (4) 2026 Planned 26-42 days Lunar orbit Deliver airlock module to LOP-G
EM-6 1B Cargo No 2027 Planned Lunar orbit Deliver Deep Space Transport (DST) vehicle to LOP-G
EM-7 1B Crew Yes (4) 2027 Planned 191-221 days Lunar orbit DST checkout
EM-8 1B Cargo No 2028 Planned Lunar orbit DST cargo logistics refuelling
EM-9 2 Crew Yes (4) 2029 Planned 1 year Lunar orbit DST long-duration test
EM-10 2 Cargo No 2030 Planned Lunar orbit DST cargo logistics refuelling
EM-11 2 Crew Yes (4) 2033 Planned 2 years Mars orbit Interplanetary flight