Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. Space Travel News .




SPACE TRAVEL
NASA's Orion Spacecraft Proves Sound Under Pressure
by Staff Writers
Houston TX (SPX) Jun 11, 2013


The Orion is seen in its test stand preparing for a Static Loads test at the Operations and Checkout Building at the Kennedy Space Center. Photo credit: NASA/Kim Shiflett.

After a month of being poked, prodded and pressurized in ways that mimicked the stresses of spaceflight, NASA's Orion crew module successfully passed its static loads tests on Wednesday.

When Orion launches on Exploration Flight Test-1 (EFT-1), which is targeted for September 2014, it will travel farther from Earth than any spacecraft built for humans in more than 40 years. The spacecraft will fly about 3,600 miles above Earth's surface and return at speeds of approximately 25,000 mph.

During the test, Orion will experience an array of stresses, or loads, including launch and reentry, the vacuum of space and several dynamic events that will jettison hardware away from the spacecraft and deploy parachutes.

To ensure Orion will be ready for its flight test next year, engineers at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida built a 20-foot-tall static loads test fixture for the crew module with hydraulic cylinders that slowly push or pull on the vehicle, depending on the type of load being simulated.

The fixture produced 110 percent of the load caused by eight different types of stress Orion will experience during EFT-1. More than 1,600 strain gauges recorded how the vehicle responded. The loads ranged from as little as 14,000 pounds to as much as 240,000 pounds.

"The static loads campaign is our best method of testing to verify what works on paper will work in space," said Charlie Lundquist, NASA's Orion crew and service module manager at the agency's Johnson Space Center in Houston. "This is how we validate our design."

In addition to the various loads it sustained, the Orion crew module also was pressurized to simulate the effect of the vacuum in space. This simulation allowed engineers to confirm it would hold its pressurization in a vacuum and verify repairs made to superficial cracks in the vehicle's rear bulkhead caused by previous pressure testing in November.

The November test revealed insufficient margin in an area of the bulkhead that was unable to withstand the stress of pressurization. Armed with data from that test, engineers were able to reinforce the design to ensure structural integrity and validate the fix during this week's test.

To repair the cracks, engineers designed brackets that spread the stress of being pressurized to other areas of the module that are structurally stronger. During these tests Orion was successfully pressurized to 110 percent of what it would experience in space, demonstrating it is capable of performing as necessary during EFT-1.

.


Related Links
Orion at NASA
Space Tourism, Space Transport and Space Exploration News






Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News





SPACE TRAVEL
A certain level of stress is necessary
Berlin, Germany (SPX) Jun 02, 2013
European astronaut Luca Parmitano's 'Volare' mission will begin on 28 May 2013 with the launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The International Space Station will be his place of work and home for the next six months. During this time, he will care for 14 German experiments, which are funded by either the German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum fur Luft- und Raumfahrt; DLR) ... read more


SPACE TRAVEL
Sea Launch IS-27 FROB Report Complete

Europe launches record cargo for space station

New chief urges Ariane 5 modification for big satellites

The Future of Space Launch

SPACE TRAVEL
Mars Rover Opportunity Trekking Toward More Layers

SciTechTalk: Mars rover readies for 'road trip' on the Red Planet

First woman in space ready for 'one-way flight to Mars'

Aging Mars rover makes new water discoveries

SPACE TRAVEL
LADEE Arrives at Wallops for Moon Mission

NASA's GRAIL Mission Solves Mystery of Moon's Surface Gravity

Moon dust samples missing for 40 years found in Calif. warehouse

Unusual minerals in moon craters may have been delivered from space

SPACE TRAVEL
Planning Accelerates For Pluto Encounter

'Vulcan' wins Pluto moon name vote

Public to vote on names for Pluto moons

The PI's Perspective: The Seven-Year Itch

SPACE TRAVEL
Kepler Stars and Planets are Bigger than Previously Thought

Astronomers gear up to discover Earth-like planets

Stars Don't Obliterate Their Planets (Very Often)

'Dust trap' around distant star may solve planet formation mystery

SPACE TRAVEL
Laser and photon propulsion improve spacecraft maneuverability

Sierra Nevada Corporation Begins Dream Chaser Main Hybrid Rocket Motor Testing

Production of Key Equipment Paves Way for NASA SLS RS-25 Testing

Boeing Completes Commercial Crew Spacecraft And Rocket Milestones

SPACE TRAVEL
Tiangong-1 ready for docking and entry

Shenzhou-10 mission to teach students in orbit

China to host international seminar on manned spaceflight

General ready for second space mission

SPACE TRAVEL
Chile observatory discovers 'comet factory'

Radar Movies Highlight Asteroid 1998 QE2 and Its Moon

ALMA discovers comet factory

New Camera At WIYN Images An Asteroid With A Long Tail




The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement