NASA completed tests for engine systems designed to support the deployment of the initial four Space Launch System rockets to space. Sixteen RS-25 engines underwent hot fire demonstrations have accumulated 14,700 seconds through 32 developmental tests since 2015, the agency said Friday.
The engines were initially developed to reach a performance rate of 100 percent and updated to operate up to 104.5 percent by using an engine controller designed to establish communications between the RS-25 units and the spacecraft. Testing efforts for the engines began in 2015 with a 500-second hot fire demo, followed by the initial SLS flight engine test in 2016.
Aerojet Rocketdyne has also started the construction of additional RS-25 engines for the agency.