Reusable Launch Vehicle Hangar

Space Florida partnered NASA for land use and the State of Florida for construction of the Reusable Launch Vehicle Hangar. The State of Florida appropriated $5.3 million for this project as part of a broader State of Florida and Kennedy Space Center initiative to expand the capability of the spaceport to support government and commercial research and technology development activities.

Past and Current Use

Located at the south end of the Shuttle Landing Facility, this 50,000 square foot hangar was completed in April 2000. The hangar was designed to support the X-33 as well as accommodate the L-1011 aircraft which carried the X-34 flight vehicle. When NASA canceled the X-33 and X-34 programs, the RLV Hangar was used to support a number of other operations and programs including protection of International Space Station flight hardware delivered to the Space Center via aircraft and storage of Space Shuttle ground support equipment. It was also used to house and protect the remnants of the Orbiter, Columbia, during the accident investigation process.
Currently, a portion of the RLV Hangar is leased to Starfighters, a Florida based company that operates high performance aircraft for support of a contract with NASA as well as tourism and air shows.

Specifications

  • Built in 2000
  • 50,000 square foot parabolic arch (200’ x 250’w x 70’h at arch)
  • 185’w x 30’h vehicle access door with an additional tail door height of 65’
  • Full environmental control
  • Paging and area warning system
  • 12’ thick, 3000 psi concrete for jacking operations
  • Mechanical, fire equipment, storage, and communications rooms
  • Strategically located adjacent to the Shuttle Landing Facility (SLF)

Recent Upgrades

  • A high expansion Foam Fire Suppression System, enabling fuel aircraft storage
  • Roof upgrades for increased climate efficiency and additional storm protection