Watch Live as ULA Attempts First Engine Static Fire Test of Vulcan Centaur Rocket

Trending 2 days ago

After recovering from an detonation astatine nan motorboat installation past month, United Launch Alliance (ULA) is getting fresh to occurrence up its heavy-lift rocket for a formation readiness trial earlier it tin alert for nan first time.

Taking retired nan Trash (in Space)

ULA’s Vulcan Centaur rocket is scheduled for its fixed occurrence trial connected Thursday, May 25 astatine 6:00 p.m. ET to make judge each systems are spell for launch. The trial firing will return spot astatine Space Launch Complex-41 astatine Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, Florida, and will beryllium broadcast unrecorded done ULA’s YouTube channel. You tin besides tune successful to nan unrecorded action done nan provender below.

For nan formation readiness test, nan rocket won’t really get disconnected nan ground. Instead, ULA will load up its Vulcan Centaur rocket pinch substance and occurrence up its copy booster BE-4 engines and spell done nan motorboat countdown. The constituent down nan firing trial is to spell done motorboat time timing and procedures. The rocket already had a tanking trial connected May 12, successful which its hardware, software, and crushed systems underwent last review.

The highly-anticipated debut of nan Vulcan Centaur rocket was initially scheduled for May 4. Shortly earlier its liftoff, however, a fiery detonation swept complete nan rocket’s trial guidelines astatine NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center successful Alabama. ULA was pressurizing nan precocious shape of nan Vulcan rocket erstwhile a spark ignited owed to an accumulation of hydrogen fuel, resulting successful a monolithic fireball.

Following nan explosion, ULA conducted an investigation of nan incident. The rocket returned to its motorboat pad connected Monday up of its last testing earlier liftoff, which has not been scheduled yet.

Vulcan’s debut has been pushed backmost respective times already. Colorado-based ULA had primitively hoped to motorboat its rocket successful 2020 and past again successful 2022. The rocket’s first shape is powered by 2 BE-4 engines built by Blue Origin, which were delivered more than 4 years past nan deadline.

The afloat expendable 202-foot-tall (62-meter) rocket is group to switch ULA’s Atlas V and Delta IV rockets, which person been successful usage for nan past 2 decades. The Vulcan Centaur is designed to assistance 27.2 metric tons (60,000 pounds) to debased Earth orbit and 6.5 metric tons (14,300 pounds) to geosynchronous orbit. The BE-4 engines tally connected a substance of liquid methane and liquid oxygen. 

For its first mission, nan rocket will effort to present Astrobotic’s Peregrine lunar lander, which, connected behalf of NASA, is designed to present 11 payloads to nan aboveground of nan Moon. Vulcan Centaur is besides carrying nan first 2 Amazon Kuiper net satellites, which are expected to beryllium delivered to debased Earth orbit.

There’s a batch riding connected nan occurrence of its inaugural flight. ULA needs to complete 2 Vulcan flights successful bid to get certified to motorboat U.S. subject and intelligence satellites for nan Space Force. The institution is under contract to present 35 missions for nan U.S. Space Force successful nan adjacent 5 years. The Vulcan rocket is besides booked to motorboat much of Amazon’s net satellites.

For much spaceflight successful your life, travel america connected Twitter and bookmark Gizmodo’s dedicated Spaceflight page.

Source Technology