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NASA's New Orion Spacecraft and Space Launch System - In Focus - The Atlantic


NASA s New Orion Spacecraft and Space Launch System In Focus The Atlantic

Three 300-pound main parachutes gently lower a mockup Orion capsule to the ground during a test at the U.S. Army Yuma Proving Ground in Arizona, on December 20, 2012. The Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle (MPCV) is NASA's next manned spacecraft, currently in development, with an unmanned orbital test flight scheduled for December 2014. (NASA) lnk.jpgNASA s New Orion Spacecraft and Space Launch System In Focus The Atlantic

A test-firing of the Orion launch abort system. The launch abort system is designed to protect the crew onboard Orion by pulling the craft to safety in the event of an emergency on the launch pad or during the initial phase of ascent. (NASA) # lnk.jpgNASA s New Orion Spacecraft and Space Launch System In Focus The Atlantic

The 70-metric-ton configuration of the SLS rocket, designed to carry the Orion spacecraft, is tested in the Trisonic Wind Tunnel at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center. This view uses special cameras and a deflection of light directed through the windows in the tunnel to show the shadows of airflow as it changes angles at high speeds, helping visualize the various intense pressures of atmosphere on the model, on August 23, 2012. (NASA/MSFC) # lnk.jpg

NASA s New Orion Spacecraft and Space Launch System In Focus The Atlantic

NASA astronauts Cady Coleman and Ricky Arnold step into the Orion crew module hatch during a series of spacesuit check tests conducted at the Space Vehicle Mockup Facility at the agency's Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas on June 13, 2013.(Reuters/NASA) # lnk.jpgNASA s New Orion Spacecraft and Space Launch System In Focus The Atlantic

Engineers install J-2X engine E10002 in the A-1 test stand at NASA's Stennis Space Center, on May 14, 2013. The installation is in preparation for a new series of tests, where the engine will be gimbaled, or pivoted, during test firings. Gimbal tests are an important part of the design process. When this upper stage engine is used in space, it will need to be able to move freely to steer NASA's Space Launch System, or SLS -- an advanced heavy-lift launch vehicle that will provide an entirely new national capability for human exploration beyond Earth's orbit. Once this series of tests is complete, the engine will be removed, and preparations will be made to begin testing the RS-25 engine on the A-1 stand in 2014. RS-25 engines from the Space shuttle inventory will power the core stage of SLS, while the J-2X engine will power the upper stage of the evolved launch vehicle. (NASA/SSC) # lnk.jpg

NASA s New Orion Spacecraft and Space Launch System In Focus The Atlantic

Testing NASA's base model for the agency's future Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle. The module took flight from a large swing, nearing 50 mph (80.5 kph), before splashing down in a pool at NASA Langley's Landing and Impact Research Facility, on August 2, 2011. (NASA) # lnk.jpgNASA s New Orion Spacecraft and Space Launch System In Focus The Atlantic

Testing NASA's base model for the agency's future Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle. The module took flight from a large swing, nearing 50 mph (80.5 kph), before splashing down in a pool at NASA Langley's Landing and Impact Research Facility, on August 2, 2011. (NASA) # lnk.jpg

NASA s New Orion Spacecraft and Space Launch System In Focus The Atlantic

The five-segment first stage of the Ares-1 rocket, is test fired at ATK Space Systems, Thursday, September 10, 2009. The motor is NASA's next generation transportation system designed for the Orion program. (AP Photo/Colin Braley) # lnk.jpg

NASA s New Orion Spacecraft and Space Launch System In Focus The Atlantic

An astronaut prepares to install a handrail on a mockup of the Orion crew exploration vehicle in NASA's Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory (NBL) near the Johnson Space Center, on September 10, 2010. A two-person crew installed and uninstalled handrails to evaluate existing hardware for use in contingency spacewalk scenarios on future exploration missions. (NASA) # lnk.jpg

NASA s New Orion Spacecraft and Space Launch System In Focus The Atlantic

Technicians work inside the Orion crew module being built at Kennedy Space Center to prepare it for its first power on. Turning the avionics system inside the capsule on for the first time marks a major milestone in Orion's final year of preparations before its first mission, Exploration Flight Test 1. (Lockheed Martin) # lnk.jpg

Source: http://m.theatlantic.com/infocus/2014/06...

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