Spaceflight Insider

First segment of Orion capsule delivered for assembly ahead of Artemis III mission

Artemis III cone panel arrives at NASA Michoud Assembly Facility. Image: NASA

Lockheed Martin takes delivery and begins production of the Artemis III Orion capsule, as the first parts of the pressure vessel are delivered to the Michoud Assembly Facility in Louisiana.

The Orion spacecraft’s first component, a cone panel featuring the capsule’s windows, of the pressure vessel for the Artemis lll mission has arrived at NASA’s Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans, Louisiana to begin the production process. The remaining six elements of the pressure vessel will arrive over the next few months, where they will be welded together to form the basis of the capsule. These components will comprise the basic framework of Orion. Orion is built by Lockheed Martin, with the delivered component manufactured by AMRO Fabricating Corp. of South El Monte California. Astronauts will breathe, work and live inside of Orion’s central pressurized structure while in deep space.

NASA’s Artemis program is a partnership between commercial and international partners, to prepare to land the first woman and next man on the Moon in 2024. The fundamental essentials of the Artemis program are the Space Launch System, Orion, and Exploration Ground Systems. Artemis l will test the first combined flight of Orion and SLS,  followed by Artemis ll, the program’s first crewed mission, and the first of the program to orbit around the moon. Following Artemis II, the Artemis III mission will utilize this Orion capsule, and will be used as part of the mission to land on the surface of the moon for the first time since Apollo 17 left the surface on December 14, 1972.

The Orion capsule pressure vessel for the Artemis II mission sits within the Neil Armstrong Operations & Checkout Building at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida during a March 2019 media event. Image: Matt Haskell, Spaceflight Insider



Theresa Cross grew up on the Space Coast. It’s only natural that she would develop a passion for anything “Space” and its exploration. During these formative years, she also discovered that she possessed a talent and love for defining the unique quirks and intricacies that exist in mankind, nature, and machines. Hailing from a family of photographers—including her father and her son, Theresa herself started documenting her world through pictures at a very early age. As an adult, she now exhibits an innate photographic ability to combine what appeals to her heart and her love of technology to deliver a diversified approach to her work and artistic presentations. Theresa has a background in water chemistry, fluid dynamics, and industrial utility.

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