The first of two operations that will put NASA's Orion spacecraft on course for a splashdown in the Pacific Ocean in a week and a half began the spacecraft's journey back to Earth on December 1.
At 4:53 PM Eastern, the main engine in Orion's service module fired for 1 minute and 45 seconds.
The spacecraft was jolted out of the far-off retrograde orbit it had been in since November 25 by that fire.
NASA managers stated that the spacecraft continued to function properly with very minor difficulties during a briefing on Nov. 30.
"We are quite happy with how well our system is running. The European Service Module programme manager for the ESA commented, "It's better than we ever expected.
Due to improved thermal stability, the spacecraft was producing more electrical power than anticipated while using less than anticipated.
Orion is currently returning to the moon and will conduct a second manoeuvre on December 5 known as the return powered flyby.
That will prepare Orion for a reentry and splashdown on December 11 off the coast of California.