Orion Mockup Outfitting

Photo of King Choi (Team Leader), Kevin Doerr, Stephen Bell Students: King Choi (Team Leader), Kevin Doerr, Stephen Bell

Sponsor: NASA

Date: Spring 2011

Requirements:
The ECLS and Avionics Bays and the structural support for the Bays must be dimensioned according to the flight model and are required to support certain distributed and point loads. The design tolerances are specified to be +/- 0.25 in. The Bays must be designed such that they can fit through either the viewing widow or side hatch of the MFM. The design of the removable Avionics Bay panel must allow for both a hinge that can fold totally flat as well as an internal hinge that does not fold completely flat. In addition, both vertical surfaces of the ELCS Bay shall have access panels no larger than 12"W x 18"H. The thickness of the panels will be determined by the team. Bay materials can be metal of any type, subject to NASA approval. It is important that the mass of each panel in the Bays be minimized so that one or two people can install or service them inside the MFM with ease. Aesthetic features, like flight colors and labels, need to be specified to bring the panels to standards required for equipment installed inside the Orion crew module. Finally, the panels need to be void of any sharp edges, corners, or burrs that have the potential of causing harm to astronauts or even other equipment.

Problem:
Design support structures for the Avionics and ECLS Bay panels that will be used in the Medium Fidelity Mockup (MFM) of the Orion spacecraft. After manufacturing, the Avionics and ECLS Bay panels will be installed inside the MFM.

Solution:
The team chose 1/4 inch 6061-T6 aluminum for the bay panel material. Using PRO/Engineer and SolidWorks, the team developed CAD models of the panels and support structure that will be installed in the MFM. Finite element analysis was used to optimize the design of the panels and support structure. A wooden support structure was designed, built, and delivered to the Johnson Space Center. A mockup of the panels, made from foam core board, was created and given to NASA for initial fit checks in the MFM. The CAD files of the panels and brackets, along with our recommendations, were given to NASA for manufacture.

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