NASA is preparing to test an important component of the next spacecraft with a crew of astronauts early next week. On Tuesday morning, July 2, the agency plans to validate an Orion capsule system designed to keep astronauts out of space.
According to Space agency, the unmanned short flight test will include 22,000 lbs. The Orion trial will receive a rocket designed by Northrop Grumman Corp. to launch from Cape Canaveral Air Station in Florida.
Also, during the 3-minute test, the spacecraft with the full-function aborting system will rise to about 6 m. At this point, the system’s powerful system abrasion engine will be launched, with the Orion capsule pulled away from the booster.
Tuesday’s test is important because NASA expects big things from Orion, a capsule that will help NASA astronauts access the moon, Mars and other destinations in deep space.
The ORION launch missions will launch a massive rocket called the Space Launch System (SLS), which is still under development, and the first SLS-Orion, an unmanned pilot flight around the moon called Artemis 1, is scheduled for next year.