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Cabin Checks Underway to Keep Crew Breathing Easy on Artemis II

The Orion Artemis II crew module is inside the Neil Armstrong Operations and Checkout Building at Kennedy Space Center.
Cabin checks underway to keep crew breathing easy on Artemis II

Assembly continues on Orion’s Artemis II crew module, the capsule that will house astronauts during their mission around the Moon. Technicians at NASA’s Neil Armstrong Operations and Checkout Building at Kennedy Space Center in Florida recently moved the crew module from its clean room environment to an external work stand, where they are assembling the environmental control and life support system and propulsion system components before installing them on the crew module. These components manage oxygen flow and cabin pressure for the crew module to sustain the astronauts during their mission.

While in space, these assemblies will use a chemical compound to absorb the water vapor and carbon dioxide inside the crew cabin. The chemical compound will then be exposed to space, through a part of the assembly called the vacuum vent manifold, to dry out for reuse. Technicians will also install an assembly that supplies fuel to the thrusters and serves as a backup in the event of an issue with the thrusters’ fuel tank.

The crew module will soon return to the clean room where teams will complete the remaining welds on the systems and install the helium, ammonia and hydrazine tanks that hold fuel for the spacecraft.

Artemis II will be the first mission to carry crew aboard Orion. Orion will launch on the Space Launch System rocket and carry astronauts farther into space than ever before to pave the way for sustainable exploration at the Moon and future missions to Mars.

Photo credit: NASA/Kim Shiflett