This is the "mobile launcher" structure, which supports the testing and servicing of the massive SLS rocket, as well as moving it to the launch pad and providing a platform from which it will launch. According to a new report in NASASpaceflight.com, the expensive tower is "leaning" and "bending." For now, NASA says, the lean is not sufficient enough to require corrective action, but it is developing contingency plans in case the lean angle becomes steeper.
These defects raise concerns about the longevity of the launch tower and increase the likelihood that NASA will seek additional funding to build a second one. In fact, it is entirely possible that the launch tower may serve only for the maiden flight of the SLS rocket in 2020 and then be cast aside. This would represent a significant waste of resources by the space agency.
For the cost of the tower, you could fly 6 fully expendable Falcon 9 Heavy missions.
#1 | POSTED BY SITZKRIEG
You could fly 20 Falcon Heavy missions and we would not learn another worthwhile thing from constantly staying in LOE except for the fact that government is terrific at wasting money.
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