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Orion Spreads its Wings

Inside the Neil Armstrong Operations and Checkout Building at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, technicians have extended one of the Artemis I solar array wings on Sept. 10, 2020.



Prior to installation on the Orion spacecraft, the team performed an inspection to confirm proper extension and to ensure all of the mechanisms functioned as expected. The pictured solar array is one of four panels that will generate 11 kilowatts of power and span about 63 feet.


The array is a component of Orion’s service module, which is provided by the European Space Agency and built by Airbus Defence and Space to supply Orion’s power, propulsion, air and water. The first in a series of increasingly complex missions, Artemis I will test the Orion spacecraft and Space Launch System as an integrated system ahead of crewed flights to the Moon. Under the Artemis program, NASA will land the first woman and the next man on the Moon in 2024.

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