Questions tagged [failure]

Questions regarding missions or parts of missions which were not successful.

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1answer
265 views

What barge height limit warning sign is Scott Manley describing? (Falcon Heavy core fell into ocean)

In the beginning of Scott Manley's new video The First Commercial Lunar Spacecraft - 20 Years before Israel & Beresheet he takes a moment to talk about recent Falcon Heavy core falling off the ...
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1answer
285 views

What went wrong during SpX-DM1

Several times since SpaceX's Crew Dragon Demo-1 Mission, I have seen allusions to a minor fault. For example, a recent article about a comparable product mentions that After its largely successful ...
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1answer
84 views

Maximum speed based on atmospheric altitude given maximum temp?

I saw the question Could escape velocity be achieved in the atmosphere? and thought it probably could've been asked better. I'm sure there's an equation to calculate the average heat generated by an ...
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1answer
221 views

What rocket system launch contained the highest amount of propellent potential energy?

In regards to rocket launches, what rocket launch contained the most potential energy (joules/btu/etc.) in its thrust propellant to achieve is basic mission? I'm not as much concerned with ...
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3answers
5k views

Have any astronauts/cosmonauts died in space?

After some casual reading around on the internet I got to the accidents that have occurred over the years in space exploration. I got to wondering that while I know that astronauts have died during ...
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1answer
149 views

What are the questions and issues related to Kosmos 482's configuration and eventual reentry?

The Space.com article Failed 1970s Venus Probe Could Crash to Earth This Year describes Kosmos 482 (1972-023A, 5919), a 1972 Soviet Venus lander spacecraft that got stuck in LEO instead. Since the ...
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1answer
855 views

Was Columbia’s CVR ever found?

Each of the space shuttles carried a cockpit voice recorder (CVR), similar to those required on commercial airliners, which recorded the crew’s conversations to aid in accident reconstruction should a ...
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2answers
452 views

How did the Mir crew recover from the power outage following collision with Progress 34?

There are several accounts about how and why the collision between Mir and Progress 34 happened and that it ended in Mir being completely dark and silent: "'For the first time I experienced a ...
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1answer
575 views

How easy would opening an Apollo capsule following dry landing be?

To help frame the problem, I have written the following scenario: It's December 19, 1972 and the Apollo 17 has returned to Earth, but something went wrong and they landed in the middle of the Outback....
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1answer
2k views

Acceleration due to uncontrolled rotation of Gemini 8

Having just watched the movie "First Man," I'm interested in analyzing the Gemini 8 malfunction in physics terms and possibly turning it into a homework problem or an example for my physics classes. I ...
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1answer
491 views

Did the crew of Soyuz MS-10 pass the Karman Line?

Just wondering if Nick Hague got his gold astronaut wings.
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Was the LES used in the MS-10 abort?

I can find no clear information regarding the use of the launch escape system in today's Soyoz MS-10 abort-to-ground. The failure seems to occur just as LES jettison is scheduled to take place. The ...
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1answer
402 views

What is a “delta-qualification” program?

In the NASA Independent Review of the Antares Orb-3 failure, they refer to a "delta-qualification program": As a result, this area of the turbopump is vulnerable to oxygen fire and failures....
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3answers
4k views

Do rockets, launch vehicles or spacecraft contain a black-box?

Like aeroplanes, do rockets also contains some black-box kind of thing to see what went wrong at the time of failure?
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987 views

Post processing of destruction of a rocket

If a rocket fails whether on the launch pad or after the lift-off, how is it determined what component failed? What are the different methods by which failure is determined?
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What causes a rocket to be destroyed during launch other than leaking fuel?

There were some famous accidents where rockets launched and just went up into flames. Many had something to do with leaking fuel in some sort. I want to focus on aerodynamic stress however, like when ...
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5answers
485 views

What are some practices of space exploration that are no longer acceptable?

I'm sure that for every good idea that made it into a spaceship design, there had to be plenty of bad ideas. There's most likely a bunch of old designs (or practices) that passed previously, but would ...
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Could Dick Scobee have flown a RTLS on Challenger 51L

In a previous question, I explored whether or not, with a call up from an observant Flight Controller, the SRB’s could be separated from the STS-51L stack before the destruction of the ET tank at 73 ...
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1answer
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How does an array of concrete pillars protect a launch control bunker?

This answer explains that this regular grid of concrete posts at Baikonur LC-1 Gagarin's Start is designed to reduce damage to the launch control bunker beneath it in the event of a catastrophic ...
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What could be used to associate these fairing halves with their launches?

Eric Ralph's Teslarati article SpaceX’s BFR factory in LA spied with four Falcon 9 fairing halves shows several panoramic photos of the site for the future rocket factory. In it, the author says: ...
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What was the design failure that Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory is alluding to?

I was looking through old saved urls and when an old Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory press release link didn't work, it sent me to the PageNotFound page, where I saw the image below. It seems ...
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1answer
309 views

What does a company do after a failed satellite launch?

What does a company (or government organization) do when a launch fails and the satellite they purchased to be put into orbit is lost? For the sake of the discussion, assume they have launch insurance....
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1answer
344 views

Which engine failed during CRS-1?

During SpaceX's CRS-1 mission, "engine 1" failed, but the booster still completed its primary mission due to a plentiful thrust and fuel margin. Clearly, an outboard engine failure is more critical ...
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1answer
668 views

Historically, how risky are first launches of new rockets?

Apropos of the Falcon Heavy test flight scheduled for February 6, 2018, what is the failure rate of first launches of new orbital rocket designs? How has this rate changed over time since the 1950s? ...
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3answers
6k views

Will the Falcon Heavy be far enough in 12 seconds to not cause damage?

Elon Musk has stated that he will consider it a success if the Falcon Heavy gets far enough away from the launch pad to not cause damage if it blows up. The Falcon Heavy underwent a 12 second static ...
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341 views

For a launch, how is safe viewing distance determined?

In determining safe viewing distance, seems to me there are discrete threats to consider: First is the rocket blowing up on the pad, or just above it. That would have no warning. There would be a ...
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Will the James Webb Space Telescope be insured against launch failure?

Most commercial satellites are insured in case something happens on launch. Although the Ariane 5 is a fairly reliable rocket, a launch failure is not out of the question. While other questions have ...
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203 views

Databases of “scrubbed” launch attempts?

I'm curious if there is a statistically demonstrable tendency not to schedule launches on certain days, such as those that contain leap seconds (see answers below this question), year changes, or ...
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What was the “sour milk smell” during the 1967 Apollo 1 testing?

In the first edition of Andrew Chaikin's 1994 book, "A Man on the Moon, there is a paragraph in chapter 1 which talks about troubles the Apollo 1 testing crew were going through. Chaikin states that ...
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1answer
156 views

Are there any procedures against biohazard containment failure on ISS?

This question might be more of a sci-fi question, so forgive me. It was inspired on behalf of the movie Life (2017) where the crew aboard the ISS catch a soil sample from Mars, and discover that it ...
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1answer
2k views

Was a method available to save the Challenger Crew?

In a previous thread, I asked the question of the likelihood of the STS stack surviving an early separation of the SRB using the SRB manual separation switch on panel C3: Could the SRB's have ...
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171 views

Does a safety team get fined if a rocket launch fails due to the safety of the rocket?

I was writing a story and I wanted to write about this topic but I could not find a straight answer from any website. Please help
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1answer
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When have secondary payloads damaged the primary payload of a launcher?

Primary payload customers have traditionally been cautious when allowing secondary payloads on the same launcher. For example, a secondary payload is not trusted to have its own chemical propulsion ...
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307 views

Were solar concentrators on HS-702 just a stop-gap measure until triple-junction PV cells were available?

According to Gunter's Space Page discussion of early versions of the Hughes HS-702 Bus: The first version of the 702 used solar arrays with concentrators. These concentrators tended to early fogging, ...
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What, if any, abort options would the crew of Columbia had on reentry during STS-107, assuming they became aware of the damage during that phase? [duplicate]

According to Wikipedia, the earliest time at which there was a known issue with Columbia's reentry was at 08:53:46, when "Various people on the ground saw signs of debris being shed". Approximately 7 ...
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4answers
2k views

Has Max-Q historically been a common failure point in rocket launches?

I believe that it's common knowledge that Max-Q is the point in which a rocket is undergoing the maximum dynamic stress during a launch and ascent. But, how often have rockets actually been destroyed ...
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3answers
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Challenger disaster: how full was the external tank at the time of destruction?

We have all heard about the Challenger disaster. Reading the Vehicle breakup subsection, this sentence made me very curious: The external tank at this point suffered a complete structural failure, ...
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908 views

How do spacecraft measure their own charge?

The discussion in the NOAA legacy page Space Weather Prediction Center Topic Paper: Satellites and Space Weather (found here) lists: Types of Spacecraft Anomalies Spacecraft anomalies are ...
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1answer
382 views

Failure modes of segmented solid rocket boosters

The Rogers Commission Report (PDF, page 73) describes the Space Shuttle Solid Rocket Boosters as [...] a faulty design unacceptably sensitive to a number of factors. These factors were the ...
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3answers
1k views

Final conclusion/description of the cause of the SpaceX Sept. 1, 2016 anomaly? What's a “buckle”?

I've just read the phys.org new item which summarizes the conclusions by SpaceX about the cause of the September 1st 2016 anomaly. I'm citing quotes in the news item which come from a SpaceX ...
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2answers
517 views

How can just making the ground broadcast stronger neutralize a zombie(sat)?

In April of 2010 the Geo-not-so-stationary satellite Galaxy-15 stopped responding to ground commands. It operates as a "bent-pipe" or Transponder system, which means - roughly speaking - it will ...
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1answer
308 views

Insight on EDM Schiaparelli's IMU error and subsequent failed landing

Read this SpaceNews article which states,'1 second of Inertial Measurement error' caused the devastation in the Schiaparelli's landing sequence, causing it to free fall for 3.7 kms. What is exactly ...
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2answers
466 views

What happens next if the root cause of one rocket failure won't be identified?

Supposing that in a rocket failure engineers don't find what the root cause was, what will happen next? In general if the root cause will never be fully understood is there a law, rule, or standard ...
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1answer
725 views

Is this explanation for the SpaceX 1-Sept-2016 anomaly plausible?

Question: Is this explanation for the SpaceX 1-Sept-2016 anomaly plausible? Or most of it at least (sans LHe)? In the recent New Atlas article SpaceX fingers helium as cause of Falcon 9 rocket ...
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Problems compressing the helium tanks inside the F9 2nd stage LOX tank at the last minute?

A recent "Anomaly Update" dated September 23, 1:00pm EDT by SpaceX, includes the sentence: "At this stage of the investigation, preliminary review ...
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1answer
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Why is the F9-029 Amos 6 case more complex than the F9-020 CRS-7 explosion?

In the F9-029 Amos 6 mission failure at the launch pad, a "fast fire" happened near the 2nd stage of Falcon 9 FT. In F9-020 CRS-7 mission, an explosion happened in flight (again in the 2nd stage) a ...
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749 views

Why was OSIRIS-REx almost destroyed because of a loss of pressure following the SpaceX “fast fire”?

In the news item on the website of ABC's affiliate station WFTV in Florida Official: SpaceX explosion nearly destroyed asteroid-seeking OSIRIS-REx spacecraft, there is discussion of a loss of pressure ...
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1answer
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How did the attitude system of the uncrewed Soyuz 7K-OK No.1 fail on the launch pad in 1966, killing ground staff as LES was activated?

Wikipedia has a stub article on the loss of the Soyuz 7K-OK No.1 test flight in 1966-12-14, but this part doesn't make sense to me: However, once the Soyuz rocket's engines ignited, they did not ...
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1answer
283 views

What was the cause of the second explosion in SpaceX's pad “Fast Fire”?

This is well after the first and second stage were gone, so I suspect it was something about the pad itself that resulted in the second explosion event. Any ideas?
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629 views

How can the elements involved in loading a LOX tank be involved in an explosion?

Since SpaceX has isolated the AMOS-6 Falcon 9 pad explosion to the upper stage LOX tank during fueling, it seems useful to consider in general terms what was happening at the time and what materials ...