crew dragon on launchpad

(Source: Nasa Spaceflight article)

While looking at the new images of the upcoming crew dragon launch I noticed a distinct lack of holes in the part of the dragon the Engines are supposed to be in. So I started researching: During assembly there are a visible covers both in the top of the bay, where the engines should be and also below that in the back of said bay:

dragon during assembly

(Source: SpaceX flickr)

These covers, or similar ones seem to already be in place during transport:

dragon during transport

(Source: SpaceX Instagram via geekwire, because Instagram does not want to permalink images)

During the Pad Abort test however there is no covering to be seen:

Abort Vehicle on Pad

(Source: SpaceX flickr)

So my questions are

  • Why are these covers there?
  • Why were they not there during the pad abort?
  • What does the one in back mean?
  • How do they get jettisoned reliably?

I could not find answers to these questions myself, because these covers do not seem to be acknowledged anywhere.

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ in the assembly picture, one can make out the text "remove before flight" on the "ribbons" hanging from the covers. These covers are manually removed close to launch. They were not present in the launch abort test picture as they had already been moved. $\endgroup$ – JCRM Jan 26 at 20:09
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Might be similar to the items used on the Shuttle. space.stackexchange.com/questions/33828/… $\endgroup$ – Hobbes Jan 26 at 23:01

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