The European Service Module will control the power, air and water of the Orion spacecraft.
Credit: Bill White / NASA
Thanks to a special delivery of the European Space Agency (ESA), NASA continues with the installation of the Orion team capsule for the first full scale test flight of the new system.
The European Service Module is responsible for the power, air and water of the Orion capsule, and now engineers can begin to mount the assembly that will fly during the month in 2020, when such a module reaches NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. .
"I wanted to go up and hug her, but they wouldn't let me do this," Bill Hill, assistant vice president of NASA's Exploration Systems Development, "told NASA at a news conference explaining the safe entry. speak service module service module. [Spectacular Photos: NASA Practices Orion Capsule Recovery at Sea]
NASA and ESA engineers who traveled with the module confirmed that the segment did not receive any damage during their travels in the Atlantic. Mark Kirasich, NASA's Orion program manager, said at a news conference that it was a matter of repeatedly testing, integrating and testing the spacecraft until it was ready to fly.
The first connection will connect the service module and the crew module adapter to precisely align the units and install the 192 screws. . Alignment is a critical part of the process, it takes some time,, said Amy Marasia, who oversees the assembly of the crew module for the upcoming flight, saying during the conference. "We're bringing together two elements built on different sides of the ocean, so it's something to wait for."
They will then be transported to a clean room for double welding – and then the team will be moved to a special room where they can be filled with helium to control leaks in those sources. The team will then install systems such as a star tracker that helps astronauts calculate their position and make electrical connections throughout the unit.
These are all now before turning the power switch planned for January 2019. NASA staff will carry out comprehensive environmental testing on combined modules in February and March with common completion.
Assuming everything went well, the crew's capsule will be tied in May and at this point the entire assembly will go to Ohio for additional tests for more than two months. Once this is complete, the package will be sent back to Florida for the 2020 flight.
Although the ESA had designed and built this service module for seven years, it actually couldn't afford a flight that took part in the flight, because it didn't fully cover how much weight NASA can gain. How the conditions for the module have changed over the years.
The module does not have an oxygen tank, for example – it does not breathe without any good astronauts. The next service module that will fly to the ESA's first onboard Orion aircraft will include that other tank that will carry that tank and will not be ready for this unit.
"We had to go and get fed, we had to go and diet every day, and you know what diets are. You're making an effort for a couple of weeks, and then something is happening and you'll lose it all" at the press conference. "We've been on a diet for about seven years."