Orion's first test flight

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by MacNut, Dec 1, 2014.

  1. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #1
    For all of the space junkies around here, the Orion space capsule will make it's first test flight Thursday, December 4.
    http://www.space.com/27883-nasa-orion-capsule-deep-space.html?adbid=10152480462751466
     
  2. SandboxGeneral Moderator

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    #2
    That's exciting news! I'm looking forward to seeing the results of the test flight and what the future may bring. Difficult to believe it's been over forty years since we've gone further than LEO.
     
  3. Scepticalscribe Contributor

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    #3
    Thanks for posting this, MacNut; a fascinating story.

    Actually, I agree with SBG that it is indeed difficult to believe that it has been over 40 years since humanity have gone further than a Low Earth Orbit. I remember the moon landings - I was a very small kid at the time, utterly entranced by the whole thing. I thought it awesome, and I still do, over 40 years later.
     
  4. SandboxGeneral Moderator

    SandboxGeneral

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    #4
    To think that the 'space race' was encouraged by the 'Cold War' and Sputnik being the first thing in space. It's kind of sad, in a way, that it was the Cold War which really got humanity to dive into space.
     
  5. localoid macrumors 68020

    localoid

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    #5
    Yes, space was simply another "high ground", the kind of place that military forces have always desired to be first to reach and control...
     
  6. juanm macrumors 65816

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    #6
    If you haven't already, check Copenhagen Suborbitals. They are a group of passionate amateurs who are building a sizeable rocket. "Amateur rocketry" you'll say. Well, not, they aim to put a man or a woman in space, inside their rocket.

    ... this is what their engines look like...

    [​IMG]

    ...the capsule...

    [​IMG]

    ...and a launch...

    [​IMG]

    ...and they launched their rockets from a floating dock, way before SpaceX...

    [​IMG]

    And they move their floating dock out to sea with...
    A freaking submarine! (of course, they built the submarine themselves)

    [​IMG]

    They are bold, there's no denying it...
     
  7. aaronvan Suspended

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    #7
    Got to get up at 0400 to watch the launch live. Can't wait!
     
  8. Scepticalscribe Contributor

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    #8
    Wow. Absolutely fascinating. That is simply incredible, and thank you very much for drawing my attention to this; I had never even heard of them.
     
  9. MacNut thread starter macrumors Core

    MacNut

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  10. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6

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    #10
    I hope everything goes well for the launch and flight. It is about time NASA got back into the business of sending humans to explore space and not just robots.
     
  11. Antares macrumors 68000

    Antares

    #11
    Maybe another cold war would kick us into gear, again...ignite a 2nd space race?
     
  12. MacNut thread starter macrumors Core

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    #12
    The space agencies all work together now for the most part.
     
  13. localoid macrumors 68020

    localoid

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    #13
    Our little robotic friends can pull off some pretty mind-blowing stuff. Take for example, NASA's planned mission to send a robotic mission to capture and redirect an asteroid to orbit the moon, which a future Orion manned mission will explore in the 2020s, the astronauts returning to earth with samples.

     
  14. MacNut thread starter macrumors Core

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  15. aaronvan Suspended

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    #15
    Still on hold...did I get up at 0400 for nothing?
     
  16. BornAgainMac macrumors 603

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    #16
    They should make it look like a T-Fighter by putting 2 solar panels on both sides.
     
  17. MacNut thread starter macrumors Core

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    #17
  18. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6

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    #18
    Hopefully the winds won't be so strong tomorrow morning.
     
  19. MacNut thread starter macrumors Core

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    #19
    I find it fascinating that they have a wind sensor that can override the launch when the winds get to high. This system seems to have a lot more safeguards built in.
     
  20. localoid, Dec 4, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2014

    localoid macrumors 68020

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    #20
    Not sure about a "sensor" -- NASA usually relies on the 45th Weather Squadron which provides weather assessments for NASA flights. The 45th has the Launch Mission Execution Forecast posted for tomorrow's projected launch on their website. Usually, 30 minutes before launch the 45th briefs the launch team on the latest weather conditions at the launch site. Next comes the final 15 minute "hold" on the countdown in which go or no-go conditions are accessed.
     
  21. MacNut thread starter macrumors Core

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    #21
    The rocket itself or something on the tower has a built in sensor that will halt the countdown if the wind goes above 20 knots.
     
  22. localoid, Dec 4, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2014

    localoid macrumors 68020

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    #22
    The 45th Weather Squadron has a _vast_ array of sensors that monitor various weather condition in the launch area, and they also launch weather balloons just hours before launches that measure wind speeds. The map below shows the myriad of weather sensors scattered around the Space Coast, which is from the article Keeping an Eye on Launch Day Weather. The meteorological sensors used by 45th Weather Squadron are considered the most unique and dense suite of weather sensors in the world. The Florida Institute of Technology and the National Data Buoy Center operates even more meteorological and oceanographic sensors in the area that aren't shown on the map below.

    [​IMG]

    The Orion mission is launching from Launch Complex 37B, which is area on the map above where one of the large cluster of wind sensors is located. The map below shows the location of 37b and the other launch complexes. (Note the map is oriented differently that the previous map.)

    [​IMG]
     
  23. SandboxGeneral Moderator

    SandboxGeneral

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    #23
    Looks like the launch was good and booster separation went well after five minutes of flight. Also said it was moving over Mach 5!
     
  24. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6

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    #25
    Awesome! No hopefully, the re-entry will go well.
     

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