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Nasa's giant new SLS Moon rocket makes its debut

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The American space agency has rolled out its new giant Moon rocket for the first time. 

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The vehicle, known as the Space Launch System (SLS), was taken to the pad at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida to conduct a dummy countdown.

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If that goes well, the rocket will be declared ready for a mission in which it will send an uncrewed test capsule around the Moon. 

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This could happen in the next couple of months. 

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Ultimately, it's hoped astronauts would climb aboard later SLS rockets to return to the Moon's surface some time in the second half of this decade. 

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SLS is a colossus. A touch under 100m in height, it was designed to be more powerful than the Apollo Saturn vehicles of the late 1960s and early 1970s. 

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