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Space Transportation Technology

Indian Launch Vehicle Explodes After Lift-Off 227

Posted by timothy
from the christmas-setback dept.
Indian communications satellite GSAT-5P was destroyed by the explosion of its launch vehicle, the Geostationary Satellite Launch Vehicle. The GSLV malfunctioned while still in its first phase of its Christmas launch, after less than a minute of flight. YouTube has a video of the explosion, taken from TV9 Kannada.
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Indian Launch Vehicle Explodes After Lift-Off

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  • Fireworks! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by nickovs (115935) on Saturday December 25, 2010 @01:26PM (#34665984)

    Pretty!!! That's one expensive fireworks display that they put on for Christmas!

    Seriously though, the GSLV seems to have a pretty poor success rate; this is the third of five operational launches to fail.

  • by fotbr (855184) on Saturday December 25, 2010 @01:31PM (#34666022) Journal

    And completely misses the fact that several seconds before the first stage goes up in a fireball, the top of the rocket falls off and collides with the first stage.

    Someone forgot to apply the indian version of lok-tite to some mating ring bolts. :)

  • Re:Fireworks! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 25, 2010 @01:56PM (#34666122)

    Well, there have been dozens and dozens of successful Indian launches in the past, only this particular rocket series (GSLV) has a low success rate (2/5). The SLV, PSLV, and others have been remarkably successful.

    And that aside, "learning from your mistakes" is only possible if you give them the tech and details of your launches, which is not happening at the moment.

  • by ColdWetDog (752185) on Saturday December 25, 2010 @01:59PM (#34666144) Homepage

    And completely misses the fact that several seconds before the first stage goes up in a fireball, the top of the rocket falls off and collides with the first stage.

    Someone forgot to apply the indian version of lok-tite to some mating ring bolts. :)

    More likely the explosive bolts exploded a wee bit early....

    From what I've been able to gather from the commentary and looking at the clip a bunch of times, it looks like it lost attitudinal control first, then the upper stage failed. Can't be sure exactly when the RSO blew the rocket up, but I think it occurs much later in the sequence when it's clear that the booster failed. Typically an errant booster is given a bit of time to fall apart before it's blown up as the destruct sequence is manual and one would like to get some video of what failed before everything turns into a bunch of expensive fireworks.

  • Re:Fireworks! (Score:4, Interesting)

    by hcdejong (561314) <hobbes AT xmsnet DOT nl> on Saturday December 25, 2010 @02:54PM (#34666388)

    It is Rocket Science.

    Not really. As companies like SpaceX have shown, these days it's more rocket engineering than science. The basic principles are well known, the biggest hurdle seems to be quality control on a huge number of parts.

  • Re:Not surprising (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 25, 2010 @03:06PM (#34666448)

    People like to sling around implications of racism, but the fact is it has everything to do with culture.

    For example, consider the difference between students raised in Asia, and students of Asian decent raised in the west. The students raised in Asia (and not necessarily Asian themselves) cheat like hell because doing well in school is *extraordinary* important in Asia. Students who were raised in the west were not raised in this extreme pressure, and are on average more honest (or at least act more ashamed of their cheating).

    This phenomenon is well documented. Posting as AC, because people will undoubtedly attempt to slander this as "racist" as well.

  • by BangaIorean (1848966) on Saturday December 25, 2010 @03:43PM (#34666588)

    Certainly not. A few components, early on in ISROs history - sure. But not "most of it". Remember that India's foreign policy leaned towards the Soviets while being "non-aligned" officially, but neither did India have a Warsaw pact kind of treaty with them, nor was India ever communist, and the Soviets never fully trusted India. There was no way the Soviets would have given us full fledged space tech. From their perspective, there was no guarantee that in India's democratic model, the pro-capitalist opposition parties would not gain strength some day, making India move closer to the USA. In the eventuality of such an event, unlike East European countries, the Soviets, having no influence within India, would have been able to do nothing to prevent such a course of events.

    Anyhow, this is irrelevant to the discussion here. I was just pointing out the stupidity of the grandparent post.

  • Re:Not surprising (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 25, 2010 @06:21PM (#34667244)

    Also posting as AC, for obvious reasons.

    Asians cheated like fucking crazy throughout grad school, and for the reasons described by parent. The thing is, in the west, there's a great deal of emphasis on honor, personal achievement, etc. In Asia, it's hugely about expectations, meeting them, and being successful.

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