Encyclopedia Astronautica
Ares I

Credit: © Mark Wade
American heavy-lift orbital launch vehicle. Shuttle-derived launch vehicle design selected by NASA Administrator Mike Griffin to boost the manned CEV Crew Exploration Vehicle into low earth orbit. A single five-segment version of the shuttle solid rocket booster would be mated with a Lox/LH2 upper stage powered by a single J-2S engine.

In the initial September 2005 design the 160 tonne upper stage was powered by an expendable version of the Shuttle SSME engine and supported by a Russian-type open Warren-truss interstage. A relatively unmodified single four-segment shuttle solid rocket booster would provide the first stage. By August 2006 the expense of the SSME and weight growth in the CEV forced NASA to switch to the J-2S engine powering a 127 tonne second stage, and a five-segment version of the SRB in the first stage. A conventional 'American' interstage was now shown.

LEO Payload: 24,500 kg (54,000 lb) to a 160 km orbit at 28.00 degrees. Payload: 25,000 kg (55,000 lb) to a 350 km 51.6 deg orbit.

AKA: Crew Launch Vehicle; CLV.
Status: In development.
Gross mass: 907,000 kg (1,999,000 lb).
Payload: 24,500 kg (54,000 lb).
Height: 94.20 m (309.00 ft).
Diameter: 3.77 m (12.36 ft).
Span: 5.50 m (18.00 ft).
Thrust: 13,963.44 kN (3,139,107 lbf).
Apogee: 160 km (90 mi).
First Launch: 2009.10.28.
Number: 1 .

More... - Chronology...

Associated Countries
Associated Spacecraft
  • Orion American manned spacecraft. In development. NASA's Crew Excursion Vehicle for the 21st Century More...
  • Ares French spaceplane. Study 1998. Small 7-meter long delta wing spaceplane, proposed by Aerospatiale, weighing 2,000 kg. Launched 2009.10.28, More...

See also
  • Ares The design selected to boost America's Orion manned spacecraft into space in the 21st Century was a family of launch vehicles dubbed Ares. Originally sold as being derivatives of space shuttle technology, tinkering by NASA engineers and necessary changes during development quickly resulted in the designs being essentially all-new. After inevitable delays and cost escalation, the Ares was cancelled in 2010. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • NASA American agency overseeing development of rockets and spacecraft. National Aeronautics and Space Administration, USA, USA. More...

Associated Stages
  • 5 Segment RSRM Solid propellant rocket stage. Loaded/empty mass 751,212/100,350 kg. Thrust 15,480.36 kN. Vacuum specific impulse 265 seconds. Five-segment version of Shuttle RSRM studied in 1999-2003 to increase shuttle payload to ISS. Test fired in 2003 but not proceeded with. Another version proposed in 2005 for use as lateral boosters for the Constellation Cargo Vehicle. More...
  • Ares Stage 2 Lox/LH2 propellant rocket stage. Loaded/empty mass 172,000/13,200 kg. Thrust 1,113.00 kN. Vacuum specific impulse 465 seconds. Second stage proposed later in design stage by NASA for launch of CEV into low earth orbit. All masses estimated. More...

Ares I Chronology

2009 October 28 - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC39B. LV Family: Ares. Launch Vehicle: Ares I.
  • Ares I-X - . Nation: USA. Agency: Clemson. Spacecraft: Ares. First flight test of the Ares/Constellation program. The Ares I-X rocket consisted of the modified Shuttle RSRM-91A solid rocket booster, a dummy Upper Stage Simulator, and a dummy Ares command module / launch abort system. It was launched from the newly modified LC39B at Kennedy Space Center to test the aerodynamics of the vehicle within the atmosphere and provide real-world data to ameliorate concerns regarding the vibration level created by the SRB for any crew in a future mission. The SRB reached 46 km altitude before descending to the Atlantic for recovery.

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