At Kennedy Space Center's Launch Pad 39A, Gwynne Shotwell, president and chief operating officer of Space Exploration Technologies SpaceX of Hawthorne, Calif., announces that NASA has just signed a lease agreement with SpaceX for use and operation of Launch Complex 39A. NASA Administrator Charlie Bolden, left, and Kennedy Space Center Director Bob Cabana listen.
SpaceX will use Launch Complex 39A for rockets such as the Falcon Heavy, currently under development. Both launch pad 39A and 39B were originally built for the Apollo/Saturn V rockets that launched American astronauts on their historic journeys to the moon and later modified to support the 30-year shuttle program. Pad 39B is now being modified by NASA to support the Space Launch System SLS rocket boosting the Orion spacecraft part of the agency’s plan to explore beyond low-Earth orbit. To learn more about Launch Pad 39A visit: http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/shuttle/launch/launch-complex39-toc.html Photo credit: NASA/Dan Casper