Vehicle Assembly Building

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Vehicle Assembly Building

Center: Kennedy Space Center
Location: Cape Canaveral, Florida
Year Built:
Historic Eligibility: National Register Listed
Important Tests:

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[top] History

The Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) was listed in the NRHP on January 21, 2000 under the historic context of the Apollo program. It has since gained importance in the context of the Space Shuttle program. It is considered significant under Criterion A in the area of Space Exploration, and under Criterion C in the area of Engineering. Because the VAB has achieved exceptional significance within the past 50 years, Criteria Consideration G applies. Structurally completed in 1965, the VAB was originally built to support the vertical assembly of the Saturn launch vehicles used for the Apollo, Skylab and the Apollo-Soyuz programs. Beginning in 1976, the VAB was reconfigured to support the Space Shuttle program. Currently, High Bays 1 and 3 are used for the integration and stacking of the complete Space Shuttle vehicle atop the MLP. Bays 2 and 4 are used for storage and processing of the Shuttle's external tank (ET). High Bay 2 is also used as contingency storage (safe haven) for the orbiters, and High Bay 4 serves as the site for payload canister operations and SRB contingency handling. Constructed specifically for the assembly of space flight vehicles, the VAB is distinguished by the specially designed platform systems that provide access to specific components. It is also one of the world’s largest buildings by volume. The resource boundary extends from the outer footprint of the building approximately 3 m (10 ft), which includes all necessary components historically required to support its functions.

[top] Photos

[top] Film Clips

1968: AS-503 Assembly - Erection and Mating

1967-05: Preparation and Erection of the S-IC First Stage for the Saturn 502

[top] Documents

VAB Diagram

VAB Newsletter

VAB Report

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