Lockheed Martin Team Tests Orion's Protective Panels

             Lockheed Martin Team Tests Orion's Protective Panels

Team Progressing Toward Exploration Flight Test-1

PR Newswire

SUNNYVALE, Calif, Nov. 7, 2013

SUNNYVALE, Calif, Nov. 7, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Testing at the Lockheed Martin
[NYSE: LMT] Sunnyvale facility in California using a series of
precisely-timed, explosive charges and mechanisms, proved the Orion spacecraft
can successfully jettison its protective fairing panels.


The Orion spacecraft has three fairings that protect the service module
radiators and solar arrays from heat, wind and acoustics during ascent. This
test was the second in a series of fairing separation tests—this time adding a
thermal element. Engineers used strip heaters to heat one of the fairings to
200 degrees Fahrenheit, simulating the temperature the spacecraft will
experience during its climb to orbit.

The testing revealed there was a successful separation of all three fairings
while under flight-like thermal and structural conditions. The separation
velocity and trajectory of each panel were within the Lockheed Martin
predicted tolerances. The test data provides a high level of confidence that
the panels will jettison as expected during the launch vehicle ascent.

"This successful test provides the Orion team with the needed data to certify
this new fairing design for Exploration Flight Test-1 (EFT-1) next year. The
test also provides significant risk reduction for the fairing separation on
future Orion manned missions," said Lance Lininger, engineering lead for
Lockheed Martin's Orion mechanism systems.

Unique to Orion, the spacecraft's fairings support half the weight of the crew
module and the launch abort system during launch and ascent. This is a new
design that improves performance, saves mass, and maximizes the size and
capability of the spacecraft.

The Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle is NASA's first spacecraft designed for
long-duration, human-rated, deep space exploration. Orion will transport
humans to interplanetary destinations beyond low Earth orbit, such as
asteroids, the moon and eventually Mars, and return them safely back to Earth.
Lockheed Martin is the prime contractor to NASA for Orion, and is responsible
for the design, build, testing, launch processing and mission operations of
the spacecraft.

In September 2014, Orion will complete its first high orbital mission. EFT-1
will launch an uncrewed spacecraft from NASA's Kennedy Space Center 3,600
miles beyond low Earth orbit. On the same day, Orion will return to Earth at a
speed of approximately 20,000 mph for a splashdown in the Pacific Ocean. EFT-1
will provide engineers with critical data about Orion's heat shield, flight
systems and capabilities to validate designs of the spacecraft before it
begins carrying humans to new destinations in the solar system.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security and
aerospace company that employs about 116,000 people worldwide and is
principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture,
integration, and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products, and
services. The Corporation's net sales for 2012 were $47.2 billion.

Media Contact:
Allison Rakes,
(303) 977-7135; allison.m.rakes@lmco.com


For more information about Orion visit:

SOURCE Lockheed Martin

Website: http://www.lockheedmartin.com
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