Stennis Space Center

Updated: September 22, 2023
In this Article

    The John C. Stennis Space Center (SSC) in Hancock County, Mississippi, stands as NASA’s premier rocket testing facility. Founded in 1961, the SSC offers testing services to over 50 entities ranging from local businesses to international agencies. Initially set up for the Apollo Program, it now certifies rocket engines for diverse space missions and supports defense, space, and environmental initiatives.

    Base Operator:
    (228) 688-3333

    Stennis Space Center Of NASA
    John C. Stennis Space Center, MS 39529

    What Kind of Base is Stennis Space Center?

    The John C. Stennis Space Center (SSC) remains pivotal to America’s space program. It has an enduring legacy in rocket engine development with facilities like the A-1/A-2, B-1/B-2, and E test stands.

    Stennis Space Center History

    Founded on October 25, 1961, SSC’s location bridged the Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans and Florida’s Kennedy Space Center. The center originally tested Apollo Program engines but has expanded its role over the decades.

    Notable milestones:

    • 1971: Began testing all Space Shuttle Main Engines.
    • 1974: Renamed as the National Space Technology Laboratories.
    • 1988: Renamed in honor of Mississippi’s Senator John C. Stennis.
    • 2015: Started testing RS-25 engines for NASA’s Space Launch System. Today, NASA operates SSC, reinforcing its commitment to space exploration, environment, and defense.


    Stennis Space Center Housing

    There is no on-base housing optiosn for the Stennis Space Center. Families transferring to the base can live in the nearby communities of Slidell, Louisiana, Picayne, Mississippi as well as other parts of region. If you’d like to live on a military installation, there are options at the Naval Contstruction Battalion Center Gulfport (CBC Gulfport) or Kessler Air Force Base.

    To learn more about the housing options available, call the Housing Referral Office at 228-871-2586.


    What is the BAH for Stennis Space Center?

    The Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) at Stennis Space Center varies depending on rank, years of service and dependency status. Visit the Mississippi state BAH page or see the chart below for more information.



    Military Housing Area: LA116

    Grade With Dependents Without Dependents
    E01 $1,584 $1,197
    E02 $1,584 $1,197
    E03 $1,584 $1,197
    E04 $1,584 $1,197
    E05 $1,656 $1,398
    E06 $2,121 $1,590
    E07 $2,277 $1,707
    E08 $2,448 $1,836
    E09 $2,634 $1,977
    W01 $2,142 $1,608
    W02 $2,349 $1,761
    W03 $2,556 $1,980
    W04 $2,667 $2,157
    W05 $2,802 $2,316
    O01E $2,307 $1,731
    O02E $2,526 $1,896
    O03E $2,685 $2,115
    O01 $1,716 $1,512
    O02 $2,115 $1,710
    O03 $2,550 $1,983
    O04 $2,847 $2,283
    O05 $3,054 $2,382
    O06 $3,078 $2,535
    O07 $3,102 $2,577

    For more information, look at BAH rates by state or calculate your exact BAH rate.

    Stennis Space Center Surrounding Area

    The Stennis Space Center is near the banks of the Pearl River, close to the Mississippi-Louisiana border. This region is rich in history, with the remnants of old towns like Gainesville, Napoleon, Santa Rosa, Logtown, and Westonia still visible within the facility. It’s roughly an hour drive from northeast of New Orleans, Louisiana, and about a half-hour drive from the Mississippi Gulf Coast. Nearby attractions include the INFINITY Science Center, a state-of-the-art educational facility that offers a glimpse into the world of space exploration.


    There is no on-base healthcare options at Stennis Space Center. Instead, look to local hospitals and clinics in nearby communities for medical care.


    The Stennis Space Center offers childcare service through its Child Development Center. It offers full day service for infants, toddlers and preschool students. The center operates from Monday to Friday, 6:00 am to 5:00 pm, ensuring comprehensive care and development programs for children.


    Education options include the Gulfport School District and the Harrison County School District.

    To learn more about surrounding area school districts, consult with the on-base School Liaison Officer, who can be contacted at 228-871-2117.

    Written by Team