NASA’s Orion capsule blasts off for test flight to Mars
NASA’s Orion capsule blasted off on its first journey into orbit, from Kennedy Space Centre off Florida coast. United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy rocket was carrying this unmanned spacecraft. This mission is a key test flight before carrying people to deep space destinations like Mars in the coming years.
Flight test: This Orion capsule flight test aims to test crucial systems like the heat shield and parachute splashdown. After the liftoff, the spacecraft entered the first of two loops around the Earth smoothly, orbiting about as high as the International Space Station (ISS), which circles at an altitude of about 430 kms.
Mission Analysis: An analysis of sophisticated sensors on this capsule will help NASA to know if the temperature inside remained survivable for a potential crew, even as the spacecraft’s exterior heated to 2,200 Celsius during its re-entry to Earth’s atmosphere at a velocity of 20,000 miles per hour.
Thus it help for the future missions for Orion, which can fit four people at a time, include a trip to lasso an asteroid and a journey to Mars by the 2030’s.
Categories: Science and Technology Current Affairs - 2017