credit Lockheed Martin / caption: the process will take three months
NEW ORLEANS, LA, April 20th, 2009 -- Lockheed Martin has begun its first friction stir weld process on an Orion crew module Ground Test Article at the NASA Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans, La.
This ground test article will serve as a production pathfinder to validate the flight vehicle production processes and tools. When completed, this first full-sized, flight-like crew module will be tested on the ground in equivalent flight-like environments, including static vibration, acoustics and water landing loads. Results will be used to correlate sizing models for all subsystems on the vehicle
Read the full press release and see more pictures here