NASA has successfully tested the launch abatement system for the Orion Occupation Capsule to bring astronauts to the Moon.
An unmanned trial of the Orion Crew Capsule was launched from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on a modified Peacekeeper rocket early Tuesday. After reaching a height of six miles, the demolition sequence of the spaceship was triggered. The capsule went up another two miles and then dropped the demolition tower.
"The demolition sequence triggered and within milliseconds the demolition engine fired to pull the crew module away from the rocket," NASA said in a statement. "His attitude control engine turned the capsule over to align it properly, and then fired the ejector engine and released the crew module for crawling in the Atlantic."
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NASA decided not to use parachutes to make this trial version of the capsule easy and therefore time-saving and crashed as planned at 300 mph into the Atlantic Ocean, the three-minute test complete. Twelve data-writers appeared in bright orange canisters before the impact to find the ocean.
The space agency confirmed on Tuesday that the data recorders were restored. "The data recorders are a backup communication system," he explained. "They were labeled, expelled from the canisters and swam in the water. Each recorder has a beacon and transmitter to help the boats find their way back. "
The Ascent Abort 2 test has successfully demonstrated, according to NASA, that the launch abatement system can overtake a rocket and bring astronauts to safety.
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Officials were satisfied with the test. "It was great in every way," said NASA's Orion program manager Mark Kirasich.
"Congratulations to our @NASA_Orion team for successfully testing the launch abort system! We are one step closer to sending @NASA_Astronauts to the Moon and beyond to Mars!" Tweeted NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine.
This was the second crash test for Orion, who was slower and slower at a speed of more than the first in New Mexico in 2010.
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The test is part of NASA's preparations for Moon's Artemis missions: the US plans to land the next man and woman on the Moon by 2024. The astronauts will also be the first humans to enter the south pole of the moon.
NASA astronaut Nick Hague and Russian cosmonaut Alexei Ovchinin made a dramatic escape from a Soyuz rocket just after leaving Baikonur Cosmont in Kazakhstan last year.
The spaceship with Hague and Ovchininin was about 30 miles above the Earth's surface when the crew was forced to make a dangerous "ballistic re-entry" into the Earth's atmosphere. After successfully deploying its parachute, the escape pod landed safely in the Kazakh steppe about 30 minutes after the missile failed.
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The 20th of July 2019 marks the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11s moon landing  Only 12 men, all Americans, have run on the moon.
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The Associated Press has contributed to this article. Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers