Exploration Flight Test 1 or EFT-1 (previously known as Orion Flight Test 1 or OFT-1) is the first planned uncrewed test flight of the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle. Set to launch on December 4, 2014 atop a Delta IV Heavy from Space Launch Complex 37B at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, the mission will be a multi-hour, two-orbit test of the Orion Crew Module featuring a high apogee on the second orbit and a high-energy reentry at around 20,000 miles per hour (32,000 km/h; 8,900 m/s). This mission design is essentially equivalent to that of the Apollo 4 mission of 1967, which validated the Apollo flight control system and heat shield at re-entry conditions planned for the return from lunar missions.
The four and a half hour flight will take the Orion spacecraft on two orbits of Earth. Peak altitude will be approximately 3,600 miles (5,800 km). The high altitude will allow the the spacecraft to reach reentry speeds of up to 20,000 mph (32,000 km/h; 8,900 m/s), which will expose the heat shield to temperatures up to around 4,000 °F (2,200 °C), or 80% of the temperature that would be experienced upon reentry from a moon mission.
During the flight, the Crew Module, Service Module, Launch Abort System, and Orion-to-Stage Adapter will be evaluated. The spacecraft will remain attached to the Delta IV's Upper Stage until reentry begins and will rely on internal batteries for power rather than photovoltaic arrays, which will not be installed. Data gathered from the test flight will be analyzed by the Critical Design Review (CDR) in April 2015.