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NASA's Orion lands with 'bullseye' splashdown

3 years 1 week 4 days ago Friday, December 05 2014 Dec 5, 2014 December 05, 2014 9:47 AM December 05, 2014 in News
Source: Associated Press
By: Marcia Dunn

CAPE CANAVERAL, FL - NASA's new Orion spacecraft made a "bullseye" splashdown in the Pacific on Friday following a dramatic test flight that took it to a zenith height of 3,600 miles and ushered in a new era of human exploration aiming for Mars.

The unmanned test flight ended 4½ hours after it began and achieved at least one record: flying farther and faster than any capsule built for humans since the Apollo moon program.

NASA is counting on future Orions to carry astronauts beyond Earth's orbit, to asteroids and ultimately the grand prize: Mars.

"There's your new spacecraft, America," Mission Control commentator Rob Navias said as the Orion capsule neared the water.

Images: NASA

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