Cool Pic: Orion MPCV Abort Acoustics Test

Standing five stories tall fully stacked, the Launch Abort System was mounted atop the Orion MPCV, or Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle, last week at the Lockheed Martin’s facilities near Denver. Orion is being prepared for the next round of testing in an acoustic chamber. Each test will expose the Orion MPCV and its launch abort system to acoustic levels exceeding 150 decibels while instruments record the vehicle’s response.

The test vehicles will provide critical data used to model the spacecraft’s capabilities to perform deep space exploration missions. The vehicles will undergo testing at sound pressure levels that emulate those experienced at launch and in the event an abort is needed to carry the crew to safety away from a potential problem on the launch pad or during ascent.

First Orion Crew Module Shipped From Michoud for Tests

The Lockheed Martin Orion team at NASA’s Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans, La., inspects the Orion crew module ground test structure prior to shipping. Photo credit: NASA

LOCKHEED MARTIN PRESS RELEASE

The Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) Orion team shipped out the first Orion crew module spacecraft structure today from NASA’s Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans, La. The spacecraft is headed to Lockheed Martin’s Denver, Colo. facilities where it will undergo a series of rigorous tests to confirm Orion’s ability to safely fly astronauts through all the harsh environments of deep space exploration missions.
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Aerojet Completes Acceptance Tests on Second Orion Engine

Test firing of Orion's main engine. (Credit: Aerojet)

AEROJET PRESS RELEASE

Aerojet, a GenCorp (NYSE:GYNews) company, in conjunction with Lockheed Martin and NASA, successfully completed acceptance testing on the second R-4D development engine. The R-4D is the Aerojet engine that will be used on NASA’s Orion crew exploration vehicle for the service module auxiliary propulsion. Eight R-4D engines, arranged in four pods of two each, will provide thrust for critical Orion maneuvers.

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