Orion enters lunar orbit, which will allow it to set a distance record

Orion enters lunar orbit, which will allow it to set a distance record
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next days Launch from Kennedy Space CenterNASA’s Orion spacecraft entered a distant orbit around the moon on Friday, completing another major milestone in a mission space agency officials say. it’s gone pretty well so far.

Orion’s thrusters fired for 1½ minutes at 16:52 Eastern time and placed the vehicle into orbit approximately 40,000 to 50,000 miles above the lunar surface. This orbit will put Orion on a path that will set the record for the farthest distance traveled from Earth by “a spacecraft designed to transport humans into deep space and safely return to Earth.” The current record of 248,655 miles was broken by Apollo 13 in 1970, NASA said in a statement.

Orion should pass this on Saturday at 7:42 pm Eastern. NASA said the spacecraft is expected to reach its maximum distance of more than 270,000 miles from Earth at 4:13 PM ET on Monday.

The distant orbit, which requires very little fuel to maintain, will allow Orion to test its systems to see how the vehicle is performing. But the orbit is so wide that it will only complete half of the orbit in six days before the vehicle begins its return flight to Earth.

Flight without an astronaut on the plane is the first step of the journey. NASA’s Artemis programAiming to return astronauts to the lunar surface for the first time since the Apollo missions of the late 1960s and early 70s.

Using cameras mounted on the outside of the spacecraft, Orion beaming back dramatic images and live video from his journey. Including spectacular images of Earth suspended more than 200,000 miles away in the vast, inky darkness of space.

If the current mission, known as Artemis I, goes well, NASA is planning a second flight, this time with astronauts on board, as soon as 2024. will come later

“The mission continues to progress as planned, and our ground systems, operations teams and Orion spacecraft continue to exceed expectations,” NASA’s Artemis I mission manager Mike Sarafin said this week. “And we continue to learn about this new deep spacecraft along the way.”

said Space Launch System rocketEven more powerful than the Apollo-era Saturn V, it performed so well that the results were “tearful.” However, its massive thrust did cause some damage to the mobile launch tower, including blowing up the doors of the tower’s elevator. But overall, “the structure itself has held up well,” said Sarafin.

After Orion orbits the Moon half a circle, he returns home with a slingshot around the Moon.

One of the main tests will take place as the spacecraft re-enters Earth’s atmosphere at approximately 25,000 mph. Friction with the thickening air will produce temperatures as high as 5,000 degrees Fahrenheit.

The spacecraft is expected to splash into the Pacific Ocean off the coast of San Diego on December 1. 11th.

While there are no real-life astronauts on the Artemis I mission, the Orion spacecraft has a model named Moonikin Campos sitting in the commander’s seat. It’s equipped with a suit and sensors to provide feedback on what the journey will be like for future astronauts.

The seat has two sensors to record acceleration and vibration. The spacesuit has sensors to record radiation levels.

The name “Moonikin” was chosen through a public contest. Campos was named in his honor Arturo KamposA former NASA engineer who played a key role in the rescue. Apollo 13 spacecraft after mission goes awry.

The two mannequin bodies move together. The names The Zohar and Helga are made of materials that NASA says “mimic the human bones, soft tissues, and organs of an adult female.” (Women are believed to be more sensitive to radiation exposure than men.)

It also has sensors to measure radiation. Zohar has a radiation vest, but Helga doesn’t.

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