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Thread: Rocketry: Always assume it will explode!

  1. #1

    Rocketry: Always assume it will explode!

    Since there's no way I'm the only rocket scientist around here, who else has been keeping up with spaceflight news?

    This morning though, bad news indeed. SpaceX had a Falcon 9 containing a comsat on the launch pad for a static fire test in preparation for a launch that was to be 2 days from now. The satellite was built by a facebook lead partnership and built by an Israeli company, it was intended to provide high speed satellite internet to the middle east.

    Something went wrong 3 minutes before ignition, and the rocket exploded. Payload lost, launch pad is pretty badly damaged. Fortunately there were no injuries reported, just some rattled neighbors as workers elsewhere on the grounds got shaken up by the shockwave.


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  2. #2
    Senior Member Robert's Avatar
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    I was looking around but could not find video? Is there one?
    R
    "Whether you think that you can, or that you can't, you are usually right."
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  3. #3
    So far I haven't found video of the explosion itself. SpaceX almost certainly recorded it on the pad cameras, but they won't release it to the public until they've investigated the matter to determine what went wrong.

    This was a fairly routine test of the craft systems and engines, so not a lot of people were paying attention until things went wrong. There might not be amateur footage.

    Edit: Found some.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_BgJEXQkjNQ

    At 1:09 you can clearly see the second stage failing first, and then triggering the first stage to explode as well.
    The only difference between being a genius and being insane is being right.

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  4. #4
    Senior Member Robert's Avatar
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    Ouch. Great show though!
    R
    "Whether you think that you can, or that you can't, you are usually right."
    - Henry Ford (1863-1947)

    Forklift Project
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  5. #5
    Senior Member Jammer's Avatar
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    That's quite an anomaly.

  6. #6
    It looks like something sparked at the upper stage tank cryo vent. Yikes!!!!!

  7. #7
    Senior Member Zapins's Avatar
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    Everything fine then BAM. Surprising.

  8. #8
    Very cool footage!! What really strikes me about it is there's a 21 second gap between when you see the first explosion and when the camera's microphone picks it up, so that means the camera was approximately 7 km away from the launch site and even at that distance, the shock wave is strong enough to shake the camera quite violently.

  9. #9
    Senior Member r4z0r7o3's Avatar
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    Garsh dangit Jim-bob! I TOLD you THAT AIN'T UHH ARSH TRAY!
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  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by rocco View Post
    Very cool footage!! What really strikes me about it is there's a 21 second gap between when you see the first explosion and when the camera's microphone picks it up, so that means the camera was approximately 7 km away from the launch site and even at that distance, the shock wave is strong enough to shake the camera quite violently.


    There was a flurry of twitter posts this morning with workers in other buildings nearby reporting that it sounded like a lighting strike and several buildings experienced earthquake-like phenomena from the blast.

    Goes to show just how much energy it takes to launch one of these craft, and what can happen when that energy is released by a means uncontrolled...
    The only difference between being a genius and being insane is being right.

    My Oil Burner

    Want a site of your own to document your foundry adventure?

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