Five months ago today, technicians at NASA's Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans, Louisiana performed the first assembly weld on the next Orion spacecraft. The capsule's pressure vessel—the part filled with air for astronauts—started out in seven pieces. By mid-January, those pieces were fused into a single, gumdrop-shaped piece of hardware.
Earlier this week, the completed pressure vessel was transported to Kennedy Space Center via NASA's spacecraft-swallowing Super Guppy aircraft. There, it was offloaded and moved into the Neil Armstrong Operations and Checkout Building, where it will be equipped with subsystems, outer layers and a heat shield ahead of its uncrewed flight to the moon, Exploration Mission 1, in 2018.
Here's a look back at the assembly and shipping process.