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Astronauts Boarding Orion Spacecraft: Image of the Month

26 Jun 2013, 20:03 UTC
Astronauts Boarding Orion Spacecraft: Image of the Month
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Our image this month shows a pair of NASA astronauts boarding a brand new spacecraft (at last). On 13 June 2013, Cady Coleman and Ricky Arnold stepped through a hatch into an Orion crew module for a series of spacesuit check tests at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas. Sadly, Coleman and Arnold will probably never ride fly an Orion into the deep black, for no Orion will carry humans for at least six years, but this picture does prove that the project is still advancing.
Coleman and Arnold must surely wish this was for real! (Image Credit: NASA/Bill Stafford)

NASA’s management hopes the Orion crew module will serve as both transport and a home to a crew of four or more astronauts during future long-duration missions to asteroids, Mars and other destinations throughout the Solar System. This is not a solely American project. A space-going Orion will be fitted to a service module derived from Europe’s successful Automated Transfer Vehicles (ATV). The service module will provide propulsion, power, thermal control, as well as supplying water and oxygen to the astronauts in the habitable module. Perhaps supplying this vital module will mean one day Europeans will travel ...

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