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Monday, December 5, 2022

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Unexpected Loss of Communication With Orion Spacecraft


Orion and European Service Module Orbiting Moon

Artist’s impression of Orion over the Moon. Orion is NASA’s next spacecraft to send humans into space. It is designed to send astronauts further into space than ever before, beyond the Moon to asteroids and even Mars. Credit: NASA/ESA/ATG Medialab

Today, NASA’s Mission Control Center at the agency’s Johnson Space Center in Houston unexpectedly lost data to and from the spacecraft at 12:09 a.m. CST. The communication outage lasted for 47 minutes and began while mission controllers were reconfiguring the communication link between Orion and Deep Space Network overnight.

Over the previous few days, the reconfiguration has been conducted successfully several times, and so the team is investigating the cause of the loss of signal this time. The team resolved the issue with a reconfiguration on the ground side. Engineers are examining data from the event to help determine what happened, and the command and data handling officer will be downlinking data recorded onboard Orion during the outage to include in that assessment. There was no impact to Orion, and the spacecraft remains in a healthy configuration.





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