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Engineers at Lockheed Martin are adding structural braces to fix the cracks found in the first Orion capsule.

Engineers at Lockheed Martin are adding structural braces to fix the cracks found in the first Orion capsule.

Engineers have designed a “doubler” to place over the cracks to ensure the craft can sustain loads from pressure, launch and landing. Geyer said two of the structural aids, similar to devices regularly used on airplanes, could be added to the spacecraft. “We’ve come up with a great plan to basically bridge over those cracks to distribute the load so we don’t see any issues on orbit,” Geyer said.

How reassuring.


Conscious Choice cover

Now available in hardback and paperback as well as ebook!


From the press release: In this ground-breaking new history of early America, historian Robert Zimmerman not only exposes the lie behind The New York Times 1619 Project that falsely claims slavery is central to the history of the United States, he also provides profound lessons about the nature of human societies, lessons important for Americans today as well as for all future settlers on Mars and elsewhere in space.

Conscious Choice: The origins of slavery in America and why it matters today and for our future in outer space, is a riveting page-turning story that documents how slavery slowly became pervasive in the southern British colonies of North America, colonies founded by a people and culture that not only did not allow slavery but in every way were hostile to the practice.  
Conscious Choice does more however. In telling the tragic history of the Virginia colony and the rise of slavery there, Zimmerman lays out the proper path for creating healthy societies in places like the Moon and Mars.


“Zimmerman’s ground-breaking history provides every future generation the basic framework for establishing new societies on other worlds. We would be wise to heed what he says.” —Robert Zubrin, founder of founder of the Mars Society.


All editions available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and all book vendors. The ebook can be purchased direct from my ebook publisher, ebookit, in which case you don't support the big tech companies and I get a bigger cut much sooner. Note that the price for the ebook, $3.99, goes up to $5.99 on September 1, 2022.


Autographed printed copies are also available at discount directly from me (hardback $24.95; paperback $14.95). Just email me at zimmerman @ nasw dot org.


  • Craig Beasley

    I can only imagine the sorts of development problems that SpaceX and others have had with their items, but we’ll never know. As a federal program, everything is laid bare, by law.

    What? You think SpaceX gets everything correct 100% of time? Of course they don’t. But they are not compelled to tell you anything about their missteps.

  • Craig Beasley

    Aw, crud, I mistyped. I meant to say:

    “With Orion, as a federal program, everything is laid bare, by law”

  • Pzatchok

    What they are adding, the rest of the world just calls ‘gussets’.

    It just means they cut their design way to close to the structural limits of the material they are working with.

    I bet they cut the material thickness back as far as possible just to save weight. And now that they have to add material to the structure to strengthen it they are losing a portion of that savings.

    Just engineers over engineering something and typically running into problems easily foreseen that they thought they were smart enough to get around.

    But this could be excused as exactly what we want NASA to do. Push the boundaries of everything right up to the breaking point so that private industry has a better idea of what they themselves can do in the real world.
    I just wish their working projects didn’t cost so much and fail so regularly.

  • jwing

    Reminds me of the saying…”You don’t want to ever see how sauseges are made.”

  • Pzatchok

    But I make sausage.

  • wodun

    It would be nice to read Kelly’s opinion on this.

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