Lockheed Martin has delivered a heat shield for the Orion Exploration Mission-1 crew module to NASA‘s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
NASA said Saturday the heat shield was transported to KSC’s shuttle landing facility Thursday from the company’s manufacturing facility in Denver via a Super Guppy aircraft.
The agency offloaded and moved the technology to the Neil Armstrong Operations and Checkout Building Saturday.
The 16.5-foot heat shield is designed to withstand temperatures up to 5,000 degree Fahrenheit that NASA expects the Orion spacecraft to experience when the vehicle re-enters Earth during an unmanned flight test with the Space Launch System in 2018.
Orion will incorporate power, communications and life support systems designed to support future human spaceflight missions to Mars and other deep-space destinations, the agency noted.
The spacecraft completed a two-orbit, four-hour flight test onboard a Delta IV heavy rocket in December 2014.