A ride into space, a high-speed re-entry and a safe parachute deployment. That’s what NASA is hoping for when the Orion vehicle soars into space for a planned flight test next month. Eventually, this spacecraft will carry humans on journeys around the solar system, if all goes to plan.
The dramatic video above shows some of the testing Orion has passed so far, culminating in an animation showing the plans for the flight test. For more details on what to expect, check out Universe Today’s Ken Kremer’s article from a few days ago. Below is a gallery of Orion images from over the past couple of years.
NASA’s completed Orion EFT 1 crew module loaded on wheeled transporter during move to the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility (PHFS) on Sept. 11, 2014 at the Kennedy Space Center, FL. Credit: Ken Kremer – kenkremer.com
NASA Administrator Charles Bolden discusses NASA’s human spaceflight initiatives backdropped by the service module for the Orion crew capsule being assembled at the Kennedy Space Center. Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com
Dive teams attach tow lines to Orion test capsule during Aug. 15 recovery test at Norfolk Naval Base, VA. Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com
Orion EFT-1 crew cabin and full scale mural showing Orion Crew Module atop Service Module inside the O & C Building at the Kennedy Space Center, Florida. Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com
By Elizabeth Howell
Elizabeth Howell is the senior writer at Universe Today. She also works for Space.com, Space Exploration Network, the NASA Lunar Science Institute, NASA Astrobiology Magazine and LiveScience, among others. Career highlights include watching three shuttle launches, and going on a two-week simulated Mars expedition in rural Utah. You can follow her on Twitter @howellspace or contact her at her website.