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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Update for Feb 22 2011

Gantt chart (project schedule using bars to represent time allotted for tasks)

The figure above shows the teams current project schedule in the form of a Gantt chart.  As of today, we are on schedule.  Here is an update on what the team has been doing, prepared by team member Casey Ross (Civil):

"Currently, two of the civil engineering students (Mike and Whitney) are experimenting with modeling the pallet in SAP2000.  This is a program used to find stress and strain in frames and other structural elements.  The goal is to finalize the modeling in ALGOR.  According to the NASA officials the team met with last Tuesday (February 15), the preferred materials for fabrication are aluminum and steel.  Because there is not much room to work with, the team decided that aluminum would be the best option due to its lightweight nature when compared to steel.  Aluminum 6061-T6 is the most commonly available heat treatable aluminum alloy.  It is used in the “manufacture of heavy-duty structures requiring good corrosion resistance, truck and marine components, railroad cars, furniture, tank fittings, general structural and high pressure applications, wire products, and in pipelines” [1].  Aluminum 6061-T6 is very easy to weld with and can be welded according to all standard welding techniques.  It can also be easily worked and formed.   Its mechanical properties include a tensile yield strength of 40 ksi, an ultimate tensile strength of 45 ksi, a modulus of elasticity of 10 ksi, and a shear strength of 30 ksi [2]."

The team leader, James Tubb, created the WBS (work breakdown structure) shown below to clarify who is responsible for overseeing various aspects of the project. This is the latest version.

WBS for NASA Orion Project.

[1]      "Material Properties Data: Aluminum 6061." Metal Suppliers Online. 22 Feb 2011. Web. 22 Feb 2011. <>.
[2]      "Aluminum 6061-T6." Aerospace Specification Metals, Inc. MatWeb, LLC, 22 Feb 2011. Web. 22 Feb 2011. <>.

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