Space

April 18, 2012

NASA continues Orion parachute testing for future test flight

NASA April 17 successfully conducted a drop test of the Orion crew vehicle’s entry, descent and landing parachutes high above the Arizona desert in preparation for the vehicle’s orbital flight test, Exploration Flight Test -1, in 2014.

Orion will carry astronauts deeper into space than ever before, provide emergency abort capability, sustain the crew during space travel and ensure a safe re-entry and landing.

A C-130 plane dropped a dart-shaped test vehicle with a simulated Orion parachute compartment from an altitude of 25,000 feet above the U.S. Army’s Yuma Proving Grounds. Orion’s drogue chutes were deployed at 20,000 feet, followed by the pilot parachutes, which then deployed the main landing parachutes. The test vehicle landed on the desert floor at a speed of almost 25 feet per second, well below the maximum designed touchdown speed of the spacecraft.

This particular drop test had two primary objectives. The first determined how the entire system would respond if one of the three main parachutes inflated too quickly, which occurs if a reefing stage, which helps the parachutes open gradually, is skipped. The second objective was to validate the drogue parachute design by testing at a high dynamic pressure that closely mimicked the environments expected for Exploration Flight Test-1. This test flight, scheduled for 2014, is designed to test a number of Orion’s systems, including the avionics, navigation and thermal protection systems and will send Orion more than 3,000 miles into space.

Since 2007, the Orion program has conducted a vigorous parachute air and ground test program and provided the chutes for NASA’s successful pad abort test in 2010. The tests improve understanding about the chutes’ technical performance for eventual human-rated certification. The next parachute test will be conducted this summer.

 




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Lockheed Martin photograph

Lockheed Martin successfully mates NOAA GOES-R satellite modules

Lockheed Martin photograph Lockheed Martin successfully mated together the large system and propulsion modules of the first GOES-R series weather satellite at the companyís Space Systems facilities near Denver, Colo. A team of...
 
 
Image courtesy of NASA/GSFC

NASA Mars spacecraft ready for Sept. 21 orbit insertion

NASA’s Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution spacecraft is nearing its scheduled Sept. 21 insertion into Martian orbit after completing a 10-month interplanetary journey of 442 million miles. Flight Controllers at Lockheed M...
 
 

Lockheed Martin-built CLIO satellite successfully launched

The U.S. government’s CLIO satellite, designed and built by Lockheed Martin, was successfully launched today from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla. Lift-off occurred at 6:10 p.m., MDT, aboard a United Launch Alliance Atlas V launch vehicle. Initial contact with the satellite was confirmed at 9:08 p.m., MDT. The CLIO system is based on innovative...
 

 

ULA launches 60th Mission from Cape Canaveral

A United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket carrying the CLIO mission for Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company launched at 8:10†p.m., EDT, Sept. 16 from Space Launch Complex-41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla. “It is an honor to work with Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company and all of our mission partners to launch this...
 
 
Image courtesy of NASA, ESA, STScI-RCC14-41a

Hubble helps find smallest known galaxy containing supermassive black hole

Image courtesy of NASA, ESA, STScI-RCC14-41a Artist’s View of M60-UCD1 Black Hole.   Astronomers using data from NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope and ground observation have found an unlikely object in an improbable p...
 
 
Image courtesy of NASA/CXC/M. Weiss

NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory finds planet that makes star act deceptively old

Image courtesy of NASA/CXC/M. Weiss A new study from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory shows that a giant exoplanet, WASP-18b, is making the star that it orbits very closely act much older than it actually is. This artist&...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>