Airbus to deliver the first Orion service module to NASA this week

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My heart be still! Airbus will deliver this week the first Orion service module to NASA.

Airbus will deliver the first European Service Module (ESM) for NASA’s Orion spacecraft from its aerospace site in Bremen, Germany on 5 November 2018. An Antonov cargo aircraft will fly the ESM to NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, USA. This is the result of four years of development and construction, and represents the achievement of a key milestone in the project. ESA selected Airbus as the prime contractor for the development and manufacturing of the first ESM in November 2014.

Four years to simply build a single manned capsule’s service module. At this pace we might be able to colonize Mars and the Moon in about 200 years, maybe!

Note however that NASA only has funding to build 1.5 of these European service modules. It is possible that Congress has allocated additional funds, but if so, I missed it.



  • Lemuel Vargas

    Hopefully, the measurements are not in metric…

  • Fred

    I realize this entire post and all comments come in a /sarc tag.

    But I must interject a point of clarification, because while the pace is glacial, Orion is never, ever going anywhere near Mars. And everyone who’s ever worked on it knows that. It’s long past time for NASA to stop intimating that SLS and Orion has anything to do with Mars.

  • Col Beausabre

    Bob Z – “At this pace we might be able to colonize Mars and the Moon in about 200 years, maybe!”

    A friend of mine, civil engineer on some major New York City projects, expresses it this way – “If they had the modern government project review and approval process during the westward expansion, we would now be getting close to the Susquehanna River”

    And Airbus? It was founded as a government jobs program and it remains so. So work as slowly as possible because if we ever actually FINISH this ting, we’ll no longer have a job.

  • wayne

    Col Beausabre
    good stuff!

    Way tangent, I digress terribly- I’d love to know what the civil engineer, thinks about Robert Moses? (infamous NY Urban Planner responsible for some $25 billion in government project’s over his career; 658 playgrounds, 416 miles of parkways, and 13 bridges.” )
    –interesting factoid; he never learned how to drive a car!

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