Chris Rink
757-864-6786, 757-344-7711
NASA Talk Focuses on Langley's Role With New Spacecraft
HAMPTON, Va. -- The future is now at NASA's Langley Research Center where a group of speakers will highlight the development to date on the Orion Project,­ NASA's next generation of space exploration vehicles.

On Tuesday, July 10, NASA Langley aerospace engineers Kevin Rivers, John Davidson, Phillip Brown and Robert Parker will present, "Langley's Contribution to Human Spaceflight: Orion Pad Abort-1 Flight Test," at 2 p.m. in the Reid Conference Center here.

The speakers will be available to answer questions from the media during a news briefing at 1:15 p.m. that day. Media who wish to do so should contact Chris Rink at (757) 864-6786, or by e-mail at, by noon on the day of the talk for credentials and entry to the Center.

That same evening at 7:30, there will be a similar presentation for the general public at the Virginia Air & Space Center in downtown Hampton. This Sigma Series event is free and no reservations are required.

NASA continues to design and develop the next generation launch system and space exploration vehicle to carry humans into earth orbit and beyond. The Orion Project is NASA's design and development effort for a crew module, a service module, and a crew module launch abort system (LAS).

The Pad Abort-1 Flight Test, also known as PA-1, was the first test of the Orion LAS design and demonstrated that it was capable of carrying a crew module in a controlled manner away from a pad location on the ground.

Langley engineers and technicians were involved with the PA-1 flight test by designing and testing the LAS, the fabrication and delivery of the PA-1 crew module simulator, and supporting launch site operations.

The speakers will discuss some of the unique attributes of both LAS and PA-1, explore some of the challenges associated with the PA-1 abort flight test, and provide an update on the Orion Project.


Kevin Rivers manages the team that oversees the development of the Orion LAS, contributed to the successful Pad Abort-1 development flight test, the Ares 1-X flight test, the Shuttle Return-to-Flight, and led the Hot and Integrated Structures Element of the Next Generation Launch Technology Airframe Project.

John Davidson is currently working on Orion as the flight dynamics lead in the LAS office. While at Langley, he developed and flight-tested control laws for the F-18 High Angle Attack Research Vehicle, performed flight control design and analysis for the Hyper-X hypersonic engine test vehicle program, and conducted research into the design and analysis of atmospheric-entry control systems for next generation planetary exploration Spacecraft.

Phillip Brown served as the project manager for the Langley Orion Flight Test Article Project leading a team responsible for the design, fabrication, and delivery of the PA-1 crew module boilerplate, PA-1 hardware, and other ground support functions.

Robert Parker was the flight test articles chief engineer and the abort flight test primary structures lead for PA-1. He led the technical side of the project, developing and manufacturing the crew module structure, supporting the integration of the vehicle, and supporting the certification of flight test readiness.

For more information about NASA Langley's Colloquium and Sigma Series Lectures, visit:

› Colloquium and Sigma Series

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