NASA’s Orion Spacecraft Transferred To Clean Room In The Operations and Checkout Building.
On September 8th, 2016 NASA invited U.S. media representatives out to the Kennedy Space Center for another opportunity to photograph the Orion Space Capsule and to interview Scott Wilson, NASA manager of production operations for the Orion Program inside the Neil Armstrong Operations and Checkout Building (OCB). While in the high bay where the spaceship is currently being worked on, Jason our lead photographer and co-owner captured some 360° images of the craft. View the 360º images below.
In July, the spacecraft was transferred into a clean room within the Operations and Checkout Building at Kennedy Space Center to begin installation of the spacecraft’s critical systems, including propellant lines. “It’s a very clean environment” said Wilson, during the tour of the OCB.
The propulsion lines are comprised of multiple metal tubes of varying lengths that are welded together around the vehicle. Assembling these lines in a clean room is necessary so no contaminates enter the lines, where they can clog valves. To ensure solid welds, X-ray specialist performed inspections of the welds for any imperfections. This process was repeated after each tube was assembled along the exterior of the crew module in the clean room.
NASA’s Orion spacecraft is built to take humans farther than they’ve ever gone before. The spacecraft will serve as the exploration vehicle that will carry the crew to space, provide emergency abort capability, sustain the crew during the space travel, and provide safe re-entry from deep space return velocities. Orion will launch on NASA’s new heavy-lift rocket, the Space Launch System.
The next launch for the Orion spacecraft is set for September 2018 from the historic launch pad 39B. This launch will be unmanned and will take the capsule around the moon. The first manned launch of the spacecraft is not set until 2021 and can be pushed to 2023. The first manned launch will take a crew of four astronauts to a lunar orbit. NASA also plans to send a crew of four to an asteroid in 2026 and even Mars.
We were at Kennedy Space Center for the arrival of the Orion Spacecraft and when the Orion was inside the Neil Armstrong Operations and Checkout Building.
Stay up to date with everything Orion at NASA’s official page.