Reentry Through the Eyes of Orion

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orionreentryvideo-plasmaWe can’t give you a ride inside Orion firsthand, but we can show what it looked like from the spacecraft thanks to cameras aboard the ship during the 4.5-hour flight test on Dec. 5. The last 10 minutes of Orion’s flight test show the plunge through Earth’s atmosphere, when searing plasma so hot it appears purple (upper left) surrounds Orion.

Orionreentryvideo-chutesdeployA few minutes later you can witness the jettison of the forward bay cover, followed by the release of the drogue chutes and then the main chutes (lower left). It’s all right there before your eyes just as it happened on Orion and how future astronauts will see it when they return from deep space missions and one day coming home from Mars.  

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4 thoughts on “Reentry Through the Eyes of Orion

  1. Peggy colebank

    That’s so beautiful, I love the soundtrack. I watched it imagining the relief for apollo astronauts who came back that way, at the sight of the main parachutes inflating.

  2. Peggy Colebank

    I’d love to know more about the main parachutes and how the staged opening is achieved. How are the reefing cords keeping them open at 20% actually cut to let them open fully?

  3. Sean Gannon

    Amazing imagery. Don’t think I will ever get to see anything like this first hand but I can only dream!


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