Space

May 21, 2012

Dragon launch to space station scrubbed

by Raphael Jaffe
Staff Writer

Gwynne Shotwell, president of SpaceX, told a post-scrub press conference that the failure to launch Falcon9-Dragon to the International Space Station early May 19 was “aborted with purpose” and so not a failure.

Regardless, the next launch attempt has been postponed until at least May 22 at 3:44 a.m., EDT. May 23 provides another possible launch time.

All was nominal until 0.5 seconds before liftoff, but the software monitoring the health of the Falcon 9 systems detected higher than normal chamber pressure for engine 5 of the nine-engine launcher – and the trend was upward.

The launch was stopped, and the system started “detanking,” as planned. “We aborted with purpose. It would be a failure if we were to have lifted off with an engine trending in this direction,” Shotwell said.

“The software did what it was supposed to do” this was not a software problem, she added. She attributed the higher pressure to higher temperature in the chamber, as a result of low flow of one of the propellant fluids; but said the pre-valve did fully open.

Evidently, engine 5 also did show high pressure in the hot fire hold down test just completed.

SpaceX chief technical officer and founder Elon Musk, tweeted “Launch aborted: slightly high combustion chamber pressure on engine 5. Will adjust limits for countdown in a few days.”

Shotwell pointed out that another Falcon 9 was on hand at SpaceX’s Launch Complex 40. She said that if needed, engine 5 could be swapped out with the one on this booster, and also that a May 23 launch would be feasible.

Launch to the orbiting International Space Station is efficient only at a given moment.

This time is when the ISS orbit puts it over the launch location. These times comes separated by several days, and then at intervals usually of each 2 or 3 days. The ISS orbital track projections on the earth look like the elongated S curves visible on the displays shown in the ISS control room images. After May 23, the next launch time will be in early June.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines September 15, 2014

News: Navy identifies pilot presumed dead in crash - A Navy fighter pilot presumed dead after two fighter jets crashed in the far western Pacific Ocean has been identified.   Business: Boeing eyes 737-700 solution for new JSTARS - Boeing is officially planning a variant of its 737-700 commercial jetliner as a competitor for the Air Force’s...
 
 

News Briefs September 15, 2014

Australia contributing planes for anti-IS campaign Australia is preparing to contribute 600 troops and up to 10 military aircraft to the increasingly aggressive campaign against the Islamic State extremists in Syria and Iraq, Prime Minister Tony Abbott said Sept. 14. Abbott said Australia was responding to a formal request from the United States for specific...
 
 
Courtesy graphic

Lockheed Martin conducts flight tests of aircraft laser turret for DARPA

AFRL photograph The Aero-adaptive Aero-optic Beam Control turret that Lockheed Martin is developing for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency and the Air Force Research Laboratory has completed initial flight testing. T...
 

 

Lockheed Martin advances live, virtual, constructive training in flight test

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=jvXmOW8L3mU Lockheed Martin successfully tested a new solution for integrated live, virtual and constructive training during a flight demonstration at the company’s Aeronautics facility in Fort Worth, Texas. During the flight test, a pilot flying in a live F-16 engaged in a synthetic training exercise with a pilot flying as wing...
 
 
Image courtesy of NASA/JPL-Caltech/Univ. of Arizona

NASA’s Mars Curiosity rover arrives at Martian mountain

NASA’s Mars Curiosity rover has reached the Red Planet’s Mount Sharp, a Mount-Rainier-size mountain at the center of the vast Gale Crater and the rover mission’s long-term prime destination. “Curiosity n...
 
 

Raytheon begins full rate production on TALON Laser Guided Rockets

Under a $117 million contract awarded to Raytheon, Raytheon Missile Systems has begun production of the TALON Laser Guided Rocket. In 2013, the Armed Forces General Headquarters of the United Arab Emirates awarded Tawazun a contract to procure the TALON Laser Guided Rocket. “Full rate production of the TALON LGR is a significant milestone for...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>