Skip to comments.DARPA Loses Contact with Hypersonic Vehicle
Posted on 04/27/2010 8:09:28 PM PDT by ErnstStavroBlofeld
A new U.S. launcher based on strategic missile hardware made its successful suborbital debut April 22, but the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) lost contact with the payload, an experimental hypersonic vehicle, soon thereafter, the agency said April 23.
DARPAs Falcon Hypersonic Technology Vehicle (HTV)-2 was the first in a series of flight experiments meant to demonstrate technologies that could be the foundation for the United States next long-range conventional missile. It was launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., atop a Minotaur 4 rocket.
Built by Lockheed Martin Corp., the HTV-2 craft was supposed to glide over the Pacific Ocean at speeds exceeding 20,000 kilometers per hour for as long as 30 minutes, DARPA said in a press release. Nine minutes after launch, however, DARPA lost contact with the craft, and the cause of the failure is still unknown, the release said. There is one remaining HTV-2 craft.
The Minotaur 4 rocket, assembled by Orbital Sciences Corp. of Dulles, Va., was expected to make its debut launch last fall. The rocket uses three government-provided Peacekeeper solid rocket motors and a commercial fourth stage. During testing last year, the gas generator on the rockets third stage motor continued to run after the motor shut off, creating undesired residual thrust. Hardware changes had to be engineered to correct the problem, delaying the first launch.
The Minotaur 4 used to launch HTV-2 was in the Lite configuration and did not have a fourth stage. In its first orbital launch, planned for June, the rocket is supposed to launch the Air Forces Space Based Space Surveillance satellite.
(Excerpt) Read more at spacenews.com ...
I lost radio contact with my homework some time after I did it.
I hope the procuring agency had a good contracting officer who claused in a big refund for DARPA if it failed.
Call in Bond, James Bond.
They should send space shuttle upthere to retrive it
Ground Control to Major Tom ...
We are so, awfully, very, terribly sorry that it impacted the Presidential Palace in Pyongyang, North Korea, 3 minutes after contact was lost.
Is “loses contact” a new way of saying “the thing blew up”?
Part of DARPA’s whole philosophy is that most of their projects don’t work - they get nervous if too many of them are, because it suggest they’re not pushing the edge of the envelope far enough.
Maybe it’s just me but they are planning on using a
rocket configuration that hasn’t worked yet to launch
>> Is loses contact a new way of saying the thing blew up?
It went soooooo fast, the radio waves couldn’t keep up with it.
We’ve discovered Warp Speed. Next- subspace tracking and communications.....
Built by Lockheed Martin Corp., the HTV-2 craft was supposed to glide over the Pacific Ocean at speeds exceeding 20,000 kilometers per hour for as long as 30 minutes, DARPA said in a press release.Thanks sonofstrangelove.
That is just what THEY want you to believe! :-)
Predicted speed is about 16.3 Mach.
What a darn shame. Well, they've still got one flight and they've probably got at least some data from this flight. At least they're flying something and trying to extend the envelope a bit.
The fear of doing flight tests has held back hypersonic flight development for at least two decades. We've managed a few things (X-43, a few tests in Australia, this), but a large part of the reason they're still doing new designs around the old X-24A, X-40, and such is that agencies responsible for aeronautics development (I'm lookin' at that first A in NASA) are too craven to bend metal and fly something any more, unless it's a dead end Larry Lightbulb "green" project that's safe as houses and not gonna scare the horses.
The H-2 is a close relative of the X-24B and HYPER III from the late 60's/early 70's. It's about time some testing was done on these sorts of shapes at high altitude and velocity. We're only 30-some years late. ;)
Glad they built two. That's the way it used to always got done, back when development really got done. One to break and one to fly. Because if you don't break something, you're not really learning anything.