List of Constellation missions
The Constellation Program was NASA's planned future human spaceflight program between 2005 and 2009, which aimed to develop a new crewed spacecraft (Orion) and a pair of launchers (Ares I and Ares V) to continue servicing the International Space Station and return to the Moon.
As of 2009, a single unmanned suborbital launch test (Ares I-X) had been flown, with crewed missions anticipated to begin between 2014 (by NASA projections) and 2017-19 (according to the independent Augustine Commission). On February 1, 2010, President Obama announced that he intended to cancel the program with the U.S. 2011 fiscal year budget. A revised proposal in April confirmed that the Orion spacecraft would be retained for future mission beyond low earth orbit, with the Ares launchers redeveloped into the Space Launch System. However, the Constellation Program itself was cancelled, with low-earth orbit operations transferred to the Commercial Crew Development program.
Development of mission plans
In October 2006 NASA released a draft schedule of all planned NASA Project Constellation missions through 2019. This document included descriptions of a series of proposed vehicle test missions. In July 2007 the schedule was reviewed. In January 2008 the schedule was again reviewed. The most recent published set of milestones is from February 2009. Also, an independent assessment by the Review of United States Human Space Flight Plans Committee in October 2009 found that under NASA's then-current plans and budget the Ares I would not be ready to launch until 2017-2019, with the Ares V not available until the late 2020s.
On October 11, 2010, the Constellation program was cancelled, ending development of the Altair, Ares I, and Ares V. The Orion Crew Exploration Vehicle was renamed the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle (MPCV), to be launched on the Space Launch System.
|Order||Date||Year||Mission||Launch Vehicle||Duration||Crew Size||Launch Pad||Note|
|1||October 28||2009||Ares I-X||Ares I-X||~2 min.||Unmanned||39B||Atmospheric test of the first stage of the Ares I-X launcher with four active SRM segments and an inert fifth segment and upper stage.|
|Planned missions as of 2009|
|2||2012||Ares I-X Prime||Ares I-X Prime||~8 min.||Unmanned||39B||Second sub-orbital Ares I-X test flight, consisting of a five segment booster with real upper stage and a dummy J-2 engine. High altitude abort.|
|3||2014||Orion 1||Ares I||Unmanned||39B||First flight of the Orion spacecraft, in an unmanned orbital flight with a splashdown off Australia.|
|4||2015||Orion 2||Ares I||39B||First manned Orion test flight. Dress rehearsal for the first manned mission including demonstration of rendezvous and proximity operations with the ISS. First docking with the ISS. Landing at Edwards AFB. Leaves an adapter on the ISS.|
|5||2015||Orion 3||Ares I||39B||Second manned Orion test flight. Leaves a second adapter on the ISS.|
|6||2015||Orion 4||Ares I||39B||ISS Crew Rotation Flight. First operational Orion flight.|
|7||2016||Orion 5||Ares I||39B||ISS Crew Rotation Flight.|
|8||2016||Orion 6||Ares I||39B||ISS Crew Rotation Flight.|
|9||2017||Orion 7||Ares I||39B||ISS Crew Rotation Flight.|
|10||2017||Orion 8||Ares I||39B||ISS Crew Rotation Flight.|
|11||2018||Orion 9||Ares I||39B||ISS Crew Rotation Flight.|
|13||2018||Ares V-Y||Ares V-Y||0||39A||Maiden flight of Ares V.|
|14||2018||Orion 10||Ares I||39B||ISS Crew Rotation Flight.|
|15||2019||Altair 1||Ares V||0||39A||Maiden flight of Altair. Altair for Orion 11.|
|16||2019||Orion 11||Ares I||39B|
|17||2019||Orion 12||Ares I||39B||ISS Crew Rotation Flight.|
|18||2019||Altair 2||Ares V||0||39A||Altair for Orion 13.|
|19||2019||Orion 13||Ares I||39B||First Orion flight to the Moon.|
|20||2019||Orion 14||Ares I||39B||ISS Crew Rotation Flight.|
|21||2020||Altair 3||Ares V||0||39A||Altair for Orion 15.|
|22||2020||Orion 15||Ares I||39B||Flight to the Moon.|
|23||2020||Orion 16||Ares I||39B||ISS Crew Rotation Flight.|
|24||2020||Altair 4||Ares V||0||39A||Direct lunar flight?|
|25||2020||Orion 17||Ares I||39B||ISS Crew Rotation Flight.|
Ascent abort tests
These will be conducted using the Orion Abort Test Booster (ATB), similar to the Little Joe II used for Apollo testing. A boilerplate Orion capsule and the escape tower will be tested on these missions.
|1||Q3||2017?||AA-1||Transonic speeds. Date subject to change with test experience.|
|2||Q4||2018?||AA-2||Maximum dynamic pressure region (max Q). Date subject to change with test experience.|
Pad abort tests
These were planned to test the launch escape system of the Orion spacecraft on the launchpad.
|1||May 6||2010||Pad Abort 1||Used the former shape of the LAS adapter.
Also known as abort flight test (AFT). The full-scale Orion AFT crew module underwent preparations at Dryden Flight Research Center.
Orion Crew Module Pathfinder 'Test Article' fabricated at Langley Research Center. The PA-1 Test took place at U.S. Army's White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico. The test slipped to "early 2010" from an originally planned date of late 2008. In October 2009 Orbital Sciences indicated the test was scheduled for March 2010.
|2||Q4||2017-18||Pad Abort 2||Use of recycled EFTA spacecraft expected.|
- "NASA sets Orion 13 for Moon Return". NASAspaceflight.com. 11 Oct 2006.
- "Constellation Program Initial Capability Content (PMR Rev. #1)" (PDF). NASA.
- "Multi-Program Integrated Milestones" (PDF). NASA. 2007-07-10. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2008-02-21. Retrieved 2007-09-21.
- "$700m gap threatens major delays to Ares test flights/development". NASAspaceflight.com. 2008-01-18. Archived from the original on 2008-01-22. Retrieved 2008-02-01.
- "Manifest Comparison PMR07 vs. PMR08 Guidelines". NASA. 2008-01-18. Retrieved 2008-02-01.
- "Multi-Program Integrated Milestones, Q2 FY 2009" (PDF). NASA. 2009-02-03. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2009-10-28. Retrieved 2009-07-20.
- "Today – President Signs NASA 2010 Authorization Act". Universetoday.com. Retrieved November 20, 2010.
- "Managers reevaluating Ares I-Y flight test". NASA.gov. 3 Nov 2009.
- 2009 MPIM gives "Orion 8"; presumably a typo
- "NASA GRC Solicitation: NASA Abort Test Boilerplate Crew Module Gaseous Nitrogen Cold-gas Reaction Control System". SpaceRef.com. June 8, 2006.
- "Surrounded by work platforms, the full-scale Orion AFT crew module is undergoing preparations for the first flight test of Orion's launch abort system". NASA. 2008-05-20. Retrieved 2008-10-10.
- "Langley Reaches Milestone, Completes Orion Crew Module Test Article". NASA. 2008-10-06. Archived from the original on 2009-10-29. Retrieved 2008-10-10.
- "Orion Pad Abort Test Slips Into 2010". Aviation Week. 2009-08-17. Retrieved 2009-08-18.
- "Q3 2009 Orbital Sciences Corporation Earnings Conference Call" (PDF). Thomson Reuters. Oct 27, 2009.