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Space Technology

Antares Rocket Launch Scrubbed 45

An anonymous reader writes "This evening's planned launch of the Orbital Sciences Antares rocket had to be canceled just 12 minutes before liftoff, due to the unexpected separation of the booster's umbilical cable while the vehicle was on the launch pad. This is the first attempt to fly the Antares rocket, which is a commercial craft and direct competitor to the SpaceX Dragon 9. Beyond being the first flight of a brand new commercial rocket, this mission is also notable for carrying three of NASA's PhoneSats; small satellites powered by Android running on Nexus smartphones. With each PhoneSat costing just $3,500, they're designed to test the limits of extremely low cost spacecraft, similar to the European STRaND-1 mission. Since this is simply an orbital test, and the Antares will not be attempting to dock with the International Space Station, the launch window is highly flexible. It's anticipated Orbital Sciences will make another attempt at launching the Antares within 48 hours."
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Antares Rocket Launch Scrubbed

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  • by Impy the Impiuos Imp ( 442658 ) on Wednesday April 17, 2013 @07:11PM (#43478099) Journal

    This evening's planned launch of the Orbital Sciences Antares rocket had to becanceled just 12 minutes before liftoff

    Wow! Antares is 470 light years away. Private space companies are advancing faster than I thought.

  • Excellent. (Score:4, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 17, 2013 @07:15PM (#43478143)

    The last thing we need to do is antagonize the Antarans. We don't even have planetary missile bases yet.

  • TFS says that the three satellites are "...small satellites powered by Android running on Nexus smartphones." I didn't know that any smartphone put out that much power or that their batteries lasted that long. I think that whoever wrote that meant that they are controlled buy Nexus smartphones.
  • >unexpected separation of the booster's umbilical cable

    I hate it when that happens.

    • by sycodon ( 149926 )

      Got to remember to screw in those to screws on either side of the connector. But if that rocket is like any of the PCs I've owned, there's never enough room to get your fingers in there to twist them.

  • wimps (Score:2, Insightful)

    by hort_wort ( 1401963 )

    The Kerbals would've launched anyway. It would've been *glorious*.

    • by RMingin ( 985478 )

      Damned straight.

      I can't count the number of times I've chanted "ABORT TO ORBIT, ABORT TO ORBIT, C'MON YOU SUMBITCH" while my wife and/or kids boggled at my antics. Desperately trying to circularize my orbit with my leftover RCS fuel, to avoid a restart and rebuild... Good times.

      KSP is one of the longest-term entries in my gaming shortlist in years. Simple sandbox, just enough structure to get you having your own ideas, tons of flexibility.

  • by robot256 ( 1635039 ) on Wednesday April 17, 2013 @08:26PM (#43478589)
    SpaceX FALCON 9 rocket!!! The Dragon capsule is just what goes on top.
  • Celeste?
  • by Anonymous Coward

    "Causes of the failure
    Investigation revealed that the Redstone's engine shutdown was caused by two of its electrical cables separating in the wrong order.[6] These cables were a control cable, which provided various control signals, and a power cable, which provided electrical power and grounding. Both cables were plugged into the rocket at the bottom edge of one of its tail fins and would separate at liftoff.[10] The control cable was supposed to separate first, followed by the power cable. However, for th

    • I just read about the 4 inch flight, and for some reason I found it hilarious. It sounds like something out of Kerbal Space Program.
  • by Kittenman ( 971447 ) on Wednesday April 17, 2013 @09:34PM (#43478971)
    Before it gets messy.

    This is similar to IT - when a user finds a bug in testing, that's a GOOD thing: it means it's not going to production like that.
  • In most cases this will hasten Kessler Syndrome.
    • by khallow ( 566160 )
      Because keeping space pristine is more important than doing anything in space. The solution is to figure out how to remove space debris not try to hold back the tide.
      • by sinij ( 911942 )
        Keeping it pristine is more important. You don't do anything in space that could potentially make it unusable for thousands of years. There might not be a practical solution to remove space debris past some threshold, would you rather find out that the case after the fact?
        • by khallow ( 566160 )

          There might not be a practical solution to remove space debris past some threshold, would you rather find out that the case after the fact?

          Sure. At least you did something in space.

      • Yes and no.

        The idea is: the more crud we put into orbit the more garbage we have to deal with. So when we launch (rocket, shuttle-type-craft, etc) now we've got all of these ballistic metal+plastic slugs flying around that we either have to avoid or watch them damage/pierce the hull. Those things move fast: factor in many many of them and avoidance becomes near impossible if we start putting up too much.

        Keep that going, and we'll need flippin armored vehicles to get past orbit which means heavier vehicles

New systems generate new problems.