- What will follow the Space Shuttle?
The Constellation Program
consists of the
Orion Crew Module, the
Ares Launch Vehicles, and the
Altair Lunar Lander.
Orion looks alot like the old Apollo capsules, but constructed with much more modern technology. The Ares booster rockets take advantage of Solid Rocket Booster and External Tank technologies used for decades by the Space Shuttle, speeding their development.
(Click for an Ares 1-X Status Report as of 2008-12-21)
A group of "renegade NASA Engineers" have proposed a program called
Jupiter DIRECT that they claim can be built and launched two or three years sooner than the Ares rocket using parts "DIRECTly" used on the Space shuttle program.
(Wikipedia article about Jupiter DIRECT)