As our blog is evolves from the Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV) into the Orion European Service Module, we were thinking of analogies to the service module’s function. Settling on ‘locomotive engine’, a member of ESA’s Orion team thought of an illustration in Jules Verne’s 1865 book From the Earth to the Moon.
Long-time ATV blog readers (Please refer to them as ‘Orion blog readers’ from now on – Ed.) followers will know that the very first Automated Transfer Vehicle was named after Jules Verne. ATV Jules Verne flew to the International Space Station in 2008 and it carried onboard original manuscripts by Jules Verne, including a copy of his book From the Earth to the Moon and two of his handwritten documents, all lent by the Amiens Métropole libraries (Amiens, France).
So it is especially fitting that the same technology that carried Jules Verne’s name and a copy of his book will fly past the Moon and back by providing essential services to the first Exploration Mission of NASA’s Orion spacecraft.
In times of change, it can be valuable to go back to your roots and reflect on what has been achieved, so after a little digging in the archives here is a meta-picture overview of how Jules Verne’s From the Earth to the Moon is going full circle.