Technology

Orion’s super shield: this is the key technology that allowed it to enter the atmosphere

NASA yesterday completed the successful Artemis I unmanned mission over the Pacific Ocean, the first of the space program with which the US agency has looked to the Moon, Mars and deep space.

When the Artemis I mission launched Wednesday, Nov. 16, the SLS megarocket carried the unmanned Orion spacecraft to the Moon to begin a new exploration. Jeremy Vander Kam (Orion Assistant Thermal Protection System (TPS) Administrator) led the team that developed the heat shield that protected the ship of high temperature during excavation.

This piece is designed to protect astronauts returning to Earth, in addition, It contains a substance called ‘avcoat’ which fights heat Also included is a ‘Three-Dimensional Multifunctional Ablative Thermal Protection System’ (3DMAT) which was fabricated from woven threads of quartz encased in resin.

Orion’s re-entry offered a final test of the TPS team’s work, meanwhile, NASA said in a statement that Vander Kam was waiting aboard a US Navy ship to participate in the spacecraft’s recovery.

In addition to returning to the Moon, NASA accomplished the goal of Get the Orion Heat Shield certified for your future flights, In addition, some of the data collected from Splashdown comes from sensors embedded in the Avocate material and samples from four were also collected.



What technologies allowed Orion to land on Earth?

  • heat shield: The innovation is built around a titanium skeleton and carbon fiber skin that provides structural support.
  • parachute: Reduces speed on re-entry to splash over the sea.
  • power and propulsion: Orion includes a service module capable of making necessary repairs midstream. Namely, it provides power, heat rejection, propulsion in space, and water and air for the crew.
  • radiation protection: Maximizes the amount of material that can be placed between the crew and the external environment.
  • environmental control systems and life support: You can recycle carbon dioxide back into usable air and process urine into potable water.

Artist's rendering of a solar powered satellite.

inspiration in apollo

The Apollo heat shield was the basis for the Orion heat shieldHowever, the latest model is designed to explore the Moon and Mars. Lockheed Martin engineers note that they “made some optimizations to make this the safest spacecraft ever built for human exploration.”

The aerothermal environment imposed on the heat shield and rear shell during re-entry is determined using a combination of ground testing and computational fluid dynamics. allows the level of accuracy That ground test alone cannot provide that.

On the other hand, mass minimization also was designed with Mars in mind, Joe Bomba (Lockheed Martin engineer) points out that “when you return from Mars, there is a lot of mechanical energy and the entry velocity can be higher than returning from the Moon, and much higher than in lower Earth orbit”. but the design we pass capable of returning from the Red Planet,


United Arab Emirates Lunar Mission.

How were the first tests?

When NASA astronauts return from the Moon during the Artemis mission, their spacecraft will zip through Earth’s atmosphere at more than 25,000 miles per hour. At that speed, the Orion capsule will trigger two forms of heating, convection and radiantagainst which its heat shield must contend to protect the spacecraft and crew.

heat shield material Tested simultaneously under both types of heating At the NASA Ames Research Center in Silicon Valley (California, USA), with that in mind, tests confirmed that the system worked as expected.

NASA explains in its blog that “when convection and radiant heat are combined, they affect the heat shield differently than either alone.” Researcher Added a powerful laser heat sourcewhich emulates the radiant heating and convection heaters already in use.”

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