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NASA is conducting another test of the Orion parachute system



  Orion's parachute system completes the seventh leap in a series of eight qualifying tests. Photo Credit: NASA

Orion's parachute system completes the seventh leap in a series of eight qualification tests. Photo Credit: NASA

Last week NASA tested the parachute system for the Orion spacecraft of the Space Agency, which is to send astronauts into space in the 2020s.

July 12, 2018 The test took place on the US Army testing ground in Yuma, Arizona, and was the seventh leap in a series of eight qualifying tests, according to NASA. The space agency engineers use these ratings to certify Orion's parachutes for manned missions.

  An artistic representation of the complete Orion spacecraft in orbit. The cone-shaped control module on the front of the vehicle is the only part that should return intact to Earth. Source: NASA

The Orion Satellite Orbit. The frustoconical control module in the front of the vehicle is the only part intact to return to Earth. Source: NASA

An arrow-shaped test article was used for this particular evaluation. The space agency said this was the last test using this device and the next test scheduled for September will use a capsule-shaped test article.

NASA said that this drop was used to demonstrate the robustness of the parachute system. It involved flying the article to a height of about 10.6 kilometers to fall off an airplane. This altitude allowed it to generate enough speed to simulate forces almost twice as much on the main slides as they would during a nominal descent.

According to NASA, the system has 11 parachutes in a total of three parachutes, two of them parachutes, three parachutes and three main parachutes. These are designed to reduce the speed of a returning capsule upon reentry to aid safe firing of the oceans, the space agency said.

After use, each of the main parachutes is extended to a diameter of 35 feet (35 feet). However, they are packed in containers aboard Orion the size of a large suitcase. To get to that small size, NASA said that the slides are compressed using hydraulic presses with forces of up to 80,000 pounds (36,000 kilograms) before they are baked and vacuum-sealed for two days. The space agency said that this gives the parachutes a density of about 40 pounds per cubic foot (640 kilograms per cubic meter) – roughly the same as wood from an oak tree.

Approximately 16 feet (5 meters) in diameter and 11 The Orion capsule is designed to carry people beyond the Earth's orbit for the first time since 1972. Her first test flight was in December 2014. She was launched on a Delta IV rocket, the two-orbit Exploration Flight Test 1 ( EFT-1 ) mission was as high as 3,600 miles (5,800 kilometers) sent to test the craft's heat shield, parachutes, computers and other items as they entered the Earth's atmosphere near the moon

The second flight of an Orion spacecraft, Exploration Mission 1 ( EM-1 [19659018]) is also due to launch on NASA's massive Space Launch System ( SLS ). This mission, which will have no people on board, will be the first SLS flight and is currently scheduled for sometime in 2020 . However, it has been postponed several times from its original target for 2017.

EM-2 – the third capsule design test flight – is expected to send people to the Cislunar area in 2023. However, as EM-1's appointment could delay development.

Video courtesy of NASA

Tagged: Leading stories NASA Orion Space Launch System Yuma

Derek Richardson

Derek Richardson holds a degree in mass media, with an emphasis in contemporary journalism from Washburn University in Topeka, Kansas. While at Washburn he was editor-in-chief of the student newspaper Washburn Review. He also has a blog about the International Space Station called Orbital Velocity. He met with members of the SpaceFlight Insider team during the flight of a United Launch Alliance Atlas V 551 rocket with the satellite MUOS-4. Richardson joined our team shortly thereafter.

His passion for space caught fire as he watched Space Shuttle Discovery launch into space on October 29, 1998. Today, this excitement has accelerated towards orbit and shows no sign of slowing down. After trying his hand at math and engineering classes at college, he soon realized that his true vocation was to communicate with others through space. Since joining SpaceFlight Insider in 2015, Richardson has been working to improve the quality of our content and ultimately become our editor-in-chief. @TheSpaceWriter


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