NASA will get new Dragon capsule coaching simulators this yr

NASA gets new Dragon capsule training simulators this year

NASA/Dmitri Gerondidakis

With each the SpaceX Dragon and Starliner modules just some years from their maiden launches, NASA has already began coaching the crews that may function them. To that finish, NASA astronauts Suni Williams and Eric Boe just lately spent a while at Boeing’s St. Louis facility making an attempt out a pair of the corporate’s model new half-process coaching simulators for the Dragon.

These simulators function just like the command consoles from the USS Enterprise — that’s, every part is a touchscreen. “We will run a number of simulations by simply altering software program,” Williams stated in a press release. “then [we] put that very same software program into a much bigger crew simulator, which we’ll use to coach the entire crew for a spaceflight.”

“The simulations are necessary for the flight exams, as a result of that is the place to place all of it collectively,” Boe added. “Consider the half-activity coach as our coaching wheels. As we get extra acquainted with the methods, the coaching wheels will come off and we’ll begin advancing to the subsequent methods. Ultimately, we’ll work with one other crew member, then with the entire flight management staff.”

Astronauts will initially practice individually on the simulators, studying how one can function the capsule underneath quite a lot of nominal and emergency conditions that would come up on a visit to the ISS. Nevertheless, as soon as the simulators are shipped to NASA’s Johnson Area Middle in Houston later this yr and wired into each the Boeing and NASA networks, astronauts will have the ability to work together with one another in addition to mission and launch management to get the fullest coaching expertise. Plus, as soon as Boeing finishes constructing its full-measurement Starliner flight deck simulator, astronauts will be capable of practice on that as nicely.