This September 2017 video NASA | Exploration Mission-1 – Pushing Farther Into Deep Space is over a year old. I found some aspects interesting and wonder if more details about this trajectory are now available.
Starting At about
The outbound coast to the Moon will take approximately 4 days. As Orion approaches the Moon, the service module will be used to perform a critical lunar gravity assist maneuver, allowing the ship to enter a distant retrograde orbit about the Moon.
The Moon will get larger and larger in the window, and at closest approach Orion will be just 62 miles from the surface of the Moon. [graphic: 4 days, 7 h 18m]
As the spacecraft flies around the far side of the Moon we will lose all communication back on Earth, and for a period of time Orion will be on its own. Mission Control will await acquisition of signal, and as we lock on, a new generation will see their first Earth rise. The spacecraft is now in the distant retrograde orbit, where its systems will be tested in the deep space environment for over a week. Along the way our ship will travel farther from
From what I can gather and deduce, the distant retrograde orbit does not begin when the video says it does (just after the first 100 km perilune at Earthrise) but in fact probably enters this orbit during a propulsive maneuver at apolune some time later.
So I think that there is a first orbit-raising burn at apolune to enter the distant retrograde orbit which is probably very roughly circular and doesn't have any very close approaches, and a second orbit-lowering burn days later which happens to be on the opposite side that results in one last ~100 kn perilune before continuing on a trajectory towards the Earth.
So the "nine-dash line line" (count 'em!) really represent days of orbiting around the Moon.
- Is my understanding correct, or close?
- Almost a year and a half-later, is this still the plan? If so, has more information about this trajectory been released? A list of major burns, distances, times, etc?