Thursday, August 27, 2009
A major test of the new Ares 1 rocket motor was delayed this afternoon in Utah as the failure of a power unit on the new rocket failed with just 20 seconds before ignition.
Ignition of the powerful rocket motor was to have punched the quiet beautiful mountain side of the Midwest at 3:15 pm EDT today, however an auxiliary power unit failed and the count held.
There is no new time or date for the rescheduled test.
When the demo motor does fire, it will produce some 3.6 million pounds of thrust as the ATK company and NASA work to prepare the next booster which will carry humans to the space station and beyond following the space shuttle's retirement soon.
The ARES 1 demonstration motor (above today) is using an aft skirt from the very first space shuttle flight's solid rocket booster, STS-1.