For an engine to take humans to Mars, it would need to be powerful – very, very powerful. And NASA might just have found its engine with that sort of “oomph”.
The RS-25 engine will hopefully one day be the catalyst help humanity reach Mars and on Thursday, NASA took one more step in that direction with a test firing of the engines in Mississippi.
As CNET points out, this “Ferrari of rocket engines” produces 512,000 pounds of thrust, which is more than 12 million horsepower. And its main shaft rotates at a rate of 37,000 rpm compared with 3,000 rpm for a car engine traveling at 60mph.
Thursday’s test was the sixth of seven planned tests for the engine, but a trip for humans to Mars is still a ways off (NASA anticipates sometime in the 2030s). And while that’s not exactly “right around the corner,” any rocket news is good rocket news to the Rocket Yard!