October 15, 2012
Engine Failure Lingers on CRS-1 Space Station Supply Mission
By Doug Mohney, Contributing Editor
NASA and SpaceX (News - Alert) have jointly formed a CRS-1 post-flight investigation board to determine what happened during an engine failure on the Falcon 9 rocket on the October 7 launch. While the primary payload/mission objective, the Dragon spacecraft, is now successfully docked at the International Space Station (ISS), the engine failure led to the effective loss of the secondary payload, an ORBCOMM (News - Alert) prototype satellite.
Since Falcon 9 is the launch vehicle SpaceX will use for its commercial crew services offering, the engine-out is getting more than a once-over look.
During the evening launch of CRS-1, engine 1 of the Falcon 9's nine first stage engines registered a loss in pressure. The onboard flight computers shut the engine down and adjusted the burn time and trajectory of the remaining eight engines to make sure the Dragon spacecraft was put in a sufficient orbit to rendezvous with the space station...Read More>>>