Science Sunday: Orion, The First Step to Mars

Rocket Science Scale: 5 – 100% Rocket Science

So the NASA is finally getting back into the Space Race. After giving up the Shuttle, All was being privatized over in the U.S. SpaceX, Boeing and Sierra Nevada emerged as the new players in the drive for U.S. exploration.

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But then, our buddies in Russia started supporting revolutions we didn’t and then all of a sudden tensions were high. Our only way into space was the Russian Soyez and The U.S. really like depending on others. (I’m pretty sure our country lives on the philosophy, “Anything you can do, I CAN DO BETTER”). So NASA again passed the shuttle to private companies so they could focus on the science behind things.

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And NASA finally showed their hand. Meet Orion, the space exploration vehicle that will hold astronauts on missions beyond the Moon.

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It was tested this past Friday successfully and is has been admitted as the first steps towards exploration on Mars. How cool is that!??!?!

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Very Cool. Extremely Cool. And of course inspiring. I like how 2014 has raised everyone’s interest in Space with Orion, Philae and of course, the explosion of . Thank goodness Orion didn’t explode.

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Here’s a fancy infographic from the Wall Street Journal outline some major facts about Orion.

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I will say the next test flight for Orion is probably going to be in 2018 (funding in NASA is limited) and astronauts will travel in Orion for the first time in 2021…. So It’ll be a few years before we get as great a year as 2014. But I can’t wait to see what is next (probably flight testing for the new  Space Launch System being developed. And that will be SICK).

I really don’t have much else to say but go back to the top of this post and watch more of the orion videos (I linked a youtube playlist of 128 Orion videos. The liftoff one is fantastic.)

Souces:

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/12/06/science/nasa-orion-spacecraft-lifts-off-into-orbit.html?_r=0

http://www.nasa.gov/exploration/systems/orion/index.html#.VIRk64vhJmM

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