CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla -- NASA's newest space shuttle capsule was unveiled Monday morning at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral. And Action News was invited inside to check it out.
The saying goes, when you have a dream - reach for the stars. NASA took that literally. This will be the next step in taking space exploration further than ever before.
Piece by piece the latest and greatest NASA creation was constructed. Orion is a four-person craft designed to go into space on top of a new monster rocket more powerful than any booster ever built.
The crew module has already gone through rigorous testing, making sure it's safe and ready to go beyond the friendly skies and into outer space. It's mission at hand will be historic, sending humans to Mars.
"We've sent of course robots out to Mars successfully for 15 times now," explained NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver. "We have a robot that's going to land on Mars that's the size of a car here in about a month, but we really are excited as a species to be exploring."
As a former astronaut, this is a day United States Senator Bill Nelson only dreamed of.
"We ventured out in what almost 40 years ago almost seemed impossible to another body," said Senator Nelson. "But now we are going out of the gravitational pull of the Earth. We're going to another planet."
But as a current astronaut, Nicole Stott is chomping at the bit to get on board that first flight to Mars.
"You know we haven't started brawling about that one yet," joked Stott. "It's always a mystery how anybody gets assigned to any space flight so it will be interesting to see how this all works out too."
NASA will finish getting this crew module ready to go at the Kennedy Space Center then fly it in its first test flight in 2014.
Right now, NASA is aiming for the 2030's to take that monumental flight to Mars.