The space agency National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has successfully conducted its launch abort system (LAS) test for the Orion spacecraft. The mission was launched to carry the first woman and the next man to the Moon by 2024 under the Artemis mission. The space agency had finalised the ultimate goal of the mission to land humans on Mars by the year 2030. The latest test was the final round of tests to establish Orion’s motor for human missions.
- The LAS test has been carried out to ensure the crew’s safety during the process of launch and travel on the Space Launch System (SLS) rocket of NASA.
- On February 25, NASA successfully tested the attitude control motor (ACM), which is built by Northrop Grumman and provides steering for Orion’s LAS during an abort, at the company’s facility, Maryland, NASA said in a press release.
- The Orion spacecraft runs on three motors – abort, ACM, and jettison that will work in unison to provide safety to the crew while landing in case of emergency.
- The abort motor has the function of pulling the crew module away from the launch vehicle, while the ACM has been set up in such a manner that it will steer and orient the capsule. Then, the jettison motor will take charge and stimulate to separate the LAS from Orion before the deployment of the parachute.
- NASA has planned to send astronauts to the Moon via Orion spacecraft under its Artemis mission.
- Earlier this year, NASA awarded its astronauts with first-class graduation under the Artemis program.
- The list of astronauts who got first class graduation included 11 NASA candidates while two candidates hail from the Canadian Space Agency (CSA).
- The Canadian duo was selected in 2017 and has completed two years of training for spaceflight to the moon.