December 6, 2011
Media Invited to Orion Spacecraft Water Landing Test at Langley
Reporters are invited to watch a test version of the Orion crew capsule take its final splash of the year Tuesday, Dec. 13, at the Hydro Impact Basin of NASA's Langley Research Center in Hampton, Va.
Testing began this summer to certify the Orion spacecraft for water landings. Orion will carry astronauts deeper into space than ever before, provide emergency abort capability, sustain the crew during space travel and ensure a safe re-entry and landing.
Since July, engineers have conducted six tests from different angles, heights and pitches to simulate varying sea conditions and impacts Orion could face upon landing in the Pacific Ocean.
The Hydro Impact Basin is 115 feet long, 90 feet wide and 20 feet deep. It is located at the west end of Langley's historic Landing and Impact Research Facility, where Apollo astronauts trained for moon walks.
Journalists must arrive by 2:30 p.m. EST at Langley's main gate. The test will occur between 3-4 p.m. Because of the nature of the testing, an exact drop time cannot be given. If the test date changes because of weather or technical reasons, NASA will issue an advisory.
To ensure access and badging, reporters must contact Amy Johnson at 757-272-9859 or at [email protected] by 4 p.m. Monday, Dec. 12.
For video and still imagery of the Hydro Impact Basin groundbreaking Orion testing, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/centers/langley/exploration/hib.html