Ares Doubts Continue to Mount

Report: No escape system could save astronauts if Ares I rocket exploded during first minute, Orlando Sentinel

"Critics countered the new report is the latest reason why Ares needs to be re-examined, or scrapped. "This is one technical issue among many," said Mike Gold, the Washington director of Bigelow Aerospace, a commercial space company. "What we find disturbing is that any time there is an external organization looking at NASA's plans, they seem to come across an issue, and this is just one example." The Air Force report, first published by nasawatch.com, is the second safety challenge by the 45th Space Wing to the solid-fuel first stage of Ares I. Air Force officials previously warned NASA they fear that violent shaking on liftoff of the Ares I-X, a rocket that will test the Ares I first stage, would disable the steering and self-destruct mechanisms, meaning it could not be destroyed if it veered off course."

Keith's update: Sources report that Steve Cook and his team were preoccupied on Friday with the ramifications of this report going public. Several meetings were held on Friday and another was planned for Saturday morning. Lots of finger pointing and asking questions along the lines of "who knew what and when did they know it?" and "how do we respond?" was reported to have happened on Friday. A briefing is being prepared for NASA Administrator Bolden for presentation as early as Monday. Stay tuned.

USAF: Orion Crew Will Not Survive Early Mission Abort, earlier post

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This page contains a single entry by Keith Cowing published on July 18, 2009 2:13 PM.

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