Everyone deserves a nice dunk into the water to freshen things up and spaceships are no different you know! Well, they don’t need to freshen up of course but there is a good reason why NASA dunked their 14,000 pound model of their Orion spacecraft into an equally gigantic swimming pool.
This was all revealed in a tweet showing the massive spacecraft getting dropped into the water and it is oddly satisfying. Though it looks like a weird test at first, it is actually crucial to check if the spacecraft is safe for human passengers. Maybe kind of like they submerge a punctured tire in water?
You can view the tweet below.
The science behind the test is that the model is covered with a variety of sensors prior to the test and when they dunk it into the water, the sensors would tell them about all the various forces acting on the model. This data can be used by the space agency to refine the structure to make sure it doesn’t collapse on itself during a real landing situation.
NASA data analyst Jacob Putnam explained all this in a live stream but dumbed it down in the end saying that if the thing floats, then the test is a success and it did exactly that.
The test was crucial as the crew members from the Artemis III mission will be landing in the pacific ocean. So it was basically a scaled-down test of the situation.
Should have dropped it from more height.