Orion is unique. It’s the only spacecraft built to NASA’s rigorous requirements for human deep space travel. It’s next mission, EM-1, will fly uncrewed out beyond the Moon. Its first crewed mission, EM-2, will then take humans out beyond the Moon, farther than ever before. Then, the EM-3 mission will start the early build-up of the Gateway at the Moon.

Orion represents unprecedented opportunity for science, development testing, and advanced manufacturing as the world’s first crewed deep-space platform. We are looking for ideas of commercial uses, including payloads, science, STEM, art and entertainment, or any other commercial endeavor. Payloads can be flown in the interior crew cabin or mounted to the exterior, static or deployable. The opportunities are broad, and we want to hear from you—what do you want to do commercially with Orion in deep space? 

Pick Your Orion Mission

Your payload concept can fly on Orion EM-1. EM-2 or EM-3. Just tell us your idea and when you want to fly.

Exploration Mission -1 (EM-1) will see the Orion spacecraft launch aboard the NASA’s large Space Launch System (SLS) rocket. The three-week, uncrewed test flight will see Orion fly 280,000 miles from the Earth, orbit beyond the Moon farther than any human spacecraft has ever traveled, and then return home safely.

Exploration Mission-2 (EM-2) will see Orion launched by the SLS rocket and will be the first time astronauts will fly aboard Orion. Orion will perform a series of checkout orbits around the Earth and then depart for the Moon. It will swing around the back side of the Moon passing about 4,800 miles above the surface and then return to Earth over the course of between eight and 21 days. This will be the first time astronauts will have gone into deep space since 1972.

Exploration Mission-3 (EM-3) preliminary mission design has Orion launching on an SLS rocket into a unique near-rectilinear halo orbit around the Moon. The crewed mission will last approximately 16-26 days and will have Orion transport the habitat module of the lunar Gateway into orbit around the Moon and mate with the pre-launched Power and Propulsion Element. Orion and the crew will then return safely home to Earth.

About Orion

Frequently Asked Questions


Q. I’m submitting a concept. How do you handle propriety information if we submit a concept?

A:  We encourage you to include a general non-proprietary description of your payload concept, and if appropriate we’ll follow up for technical specifics and to put in place a confidentiality agreement, if needed. Do not share information that is owned by a person or entity other than yourself (e.g., your employer).

Q: I’m considering submitting a payload concept. Do you welcome concepts from outside the US?

A: We welcome all concepts, especially some that have broad application across customer sets. If you are not a U.S. Person (meaning generally that you are not a US citizen or do not represent a company organized to do business in the U.S.) we will need to gather some information from you first and then obtain necessary approvals before we can work with you and/or your company on your concept.