NASA – The Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle (MPCV) is based on the Orion design requirements for traveling beyond Low Earth Orbit (LEO). The MPCV will serve as the exploration vehicle that will:
- carry the crew to space
- provide emergency abort capability
- sustain the crew during the space travel, and
- provide safe re-entry from deep space return velocities.
Capable of conducting regular in-space operations :
- extravehicular activity in conjunction with payloads delivered by SLS (Space Launch System) for missions beyond LEO (Low Earth Orbit)
- Capability to be a backup system for ISS (International Space Station) cargo and crew delivery
“We are committed to human exploration beyond low-Earth orbit and look forward to developing the next generation of systems to take us there,” NASA Administrator Charles Bolden said. “The NASA Authorization Act lays out a clear path forward for us by handing off transportation to the International Space Station to our private sector partners, so we can focus on deep space exploration. As we aggressively continue our work on a heavy lift launch vehicle, we are moving forward with an existing contract to keep development of our new crew vehicle on track.”
America will send a new generation of explorers to the moon aboard NASA’s Orion crew exploration vehicle. Making its first flights to the International Space Station early in the next decade, Orion is part of the Constellation Program to send human explorers back to the moon, and then onward to Mars and other destinations in the solar system.
First Test Orion Crew Module Shipped Out
NASA and Lockheed Martin engineers shipped out the first Orion crew module spacecraft structure on Monday, Feb. 10, from NASA’s Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans, La. The spacecraft is headed to Lockheed Martin’s Denver, Colo., facilities where it will undergo a series of rigorous tests to confirm Orion’s ability to safely fly astronauts through all the harsh environments of deep space exploration missions.