On the third day of preparations for recovery of Orion after its splashdown in the Pacific Ocean, the well deck of the USS Anchorage has been filled with water and recovery hardware is in place. U.S. Navy divers have embarked from ship to practice recovery procedures in rigid hull inflatable boats and Zodiac boats. NASA, Lockheed Martin and U.S. Navy personnel are preparing for recovery of the crew module, forward bay cover and parachutes on its return from space and splashdown in the Pacific Ocean. The Ground Systems Development and Operations Program is leading the recovery efforts.
The first unpiloted flight test of Orion is scheduled to launch Dec. 4 atop a United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy rocket. During its two-orbit, 4.5-hour flight, Orion will venture 3,600 miles in altitude and travel nearly 60,000 miles before returning to Earth for a splashdown in the Pacific Ocean. For more information, visit http://www.nasa.gov/orion. Photo credit: NASA/Cory Huston