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Discussion in 'SpaceX' started by sderrick, Oct 21, 2014.
Isn't there a static test of the Dragon's escape system using the Supper Dracos coming up soon?
I'm not aware of any "static test" to be done at the Cape. I'm sure SpaceX has been doing static tests at their Texas test facility though.
The upcoming test at the Cape (last I heard set for November, no more specific date set AFAIK) will be a pad abort, with Dragon 2 / trunk using the SuperDraco LAS to blast off of a "truss structure" (i.e. Falcon 9 simulator) mounted on the pad, and then land via parachutes.
After that will be the in-flight LAS abort test, which will be sometime in early 2015.
Source: this NSF article.
You have a funy way of saying no , "no Static" test, yes "Static test"! Using the super draco's to blast off from a truss structure, is a static test! A dynamic test would be to do it from a moving rocket....
Anybody know of when this is planned and if it will be broadcast live?
Heh, I was using the "nothing moves" definition of static -- like the Static Fire tests of Falcon 9 rockets prior to their launches, when the rocket is held to the pad and not released. But yes this will be a LAS test from a non-moving platform, as opposed to the follow-on LAS test from a rocket while in flight.
Not aware of a specific date or any additional details as yet.
Got it! ;-)
Be nice to watch it if SpaceX or Nasa provide live video! I think I read that this "truss based" test will use a parachute and land in the water vs using the thusters to land it on land.
Correct because per the requirements of the contract this is all they need to make it to human launches. The powered landing is a bonus and they said it wouldnt even do that until after the first couple human launches (if I am remembering correctly)
Still waiting for news about testing the abort/landing system being used on Dragon2? Are they testing it in Texas under wraps?
It is a contract goal/requirement, so at some point there must be a test that NASA is able to review the details of. This makes the most sense for it to happen at the Cape. We are not supposed to have this test until December sometime, so I am not really surprised we don't have a more solid date yet. It isn't something that needs to be timed against the relative spin and orbit of other planetary bodies so it doesn't need such a restrictive lock in period.
Haha, I read this as "Super Tacos"... would that make their rocket engine nozzle design a Taco Bell?
I realize there is a planned required test at the cape. One would think they would do multiple tests at the Texas facilitie before the NASA required test is done. With video to show how cool it works! Of course if the test breaks the Dragon becasue it would land on dry ground with a parachute in Texas, that would complicate things....
I would think that SpaceX would really want to recover their first stage for the Dragon V2 test. It would save them a whole lot of money. So I would expect that this test would happen after the resupply mission and the first test landing of the first stage Falcon 9 on the floating platform.
That is the later test for the in-flight abort. The one this thread is talking about is the launch-abort test for which they aren't even using a real first/second stage rocket. They are just sticking the capsule on top of a static pillar and the test is to have the capsule shoot itself away from the pillar and land safely on the ground nearby.
The intent behind this safety is in the event of a catastrophic failure on the pad (like say, the first stage blowing up), they would be able to shoot the capsule away safely before the explosion or whatever failure causes harm to the passengers.
I also assume that as part of the budgeting for the contract award they assumed for total loss of the test vehicles during the test (as in no chance of reusability). So even when they do the in-flight abort, I doubt they are budgeted to "save" the rocket.
Exactly! I would expect noise like this http://spacefellowship.com/news/art41848/orion-abort-motor-igniter-test.html concerning Dragon2 during the runup to the test at the cape... Which as planned is coming up real soon.
Pretty sure that in all abort cases, parachutes will be used to land on water -- since you've already used up most of your propellant to shoot away from the rocket in the first place.
I thought the capsule would use it's thrusters for final traversal/boost/whatever in space so they should still have some fuel inside to do an assisted landing (parachutes combined with rockets). But for the early tests you are correct in that they may very well choose to jettison off into the water to give a "soft" landing.
But even if not, you can still do a parachute landing on land (especially on an empty capsule) as per the test that blue origin did 2 years ago:
Blue Origin - Updates - Great Day in West Texas
Not at all ideal, I would assume, since the hard landing would likely cause real damage to the capsule, but if you are looking at this as something to save lives, you might not be so concerned about preventing damage to your vehicle. Note that I am just throwing this out there as a reason why location doesn't necessarily matter and that if they wanted they could be testing this in Texas prior to the test for NASA.