Author Topic: LIVE: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - Dec 11, 2012  (Read 125373 times)

Online Galactic Penguin SST

I was looking around the net when I looked at the ULA website, and saw that the launch date has slipped to October 30 (presumbly because of the RL-10 issues).  ::)

http://www.ulalaunch.com/site/pages/Launch.shtml#/33/

BTW I was suprised that no one has made a thread about this launch yet....
« Last Edit: 12/11/2012 12:29 PM by Chris Bergin »
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Offline Joffan

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Re: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - October 30, 2012
« Reply #1 on: 10/16/2012 02:47 PM »
Ha - the web page is an image, no copyable text. So, there may be transcription errors:
Quote
Atlas V to Launch Third Orbital Test Vehicle Flight

Rocket/Payload: An Atlas V 501 configuration will launch the Air Force's Third Orbital Test Vehicle (OTV-3) mission. ULA is providing the launch service on behalf of the Air Force's Rapid Capabilities Office.

Date/Site/Launch Time: Tuesday, Oct. 30, from Space Launch Complex-41, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla.

Launch Notes: The OTV-3 mission marks the 34th Atlas V launch since its inaugural launch in 2002. Atlas V vehicles also launched the OTV-1 and OTV-2 missions.

Mission Description: A United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket will launch the U.S. military's Third Orbital Test Vehicle, a prototype space plane. The OTV, also known as the X-37B, supports space experimentation, risk reduction and concept of operations (CONOPS) development for long duration and reusable space vehicle technologies.

Go Atlas! Go Centaur! Go OTV-3!
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Online Galactic Penguin SST

Re: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - October 30, 2012
« Reply #2 on: 10/16/2012 02:51 PM »
I was looking around the net when I looked at the ULA website, and saw that the launch date has slipped to October 30 (presumbly because of the RL-10 issues).  ::)

http://www.ulalaunch.com/site/pages/Launch.shtml#/33/

BTW I was suprised that no one has made a thread about this launch yet....

According to another NSF member, the delay is related to weather and range constraints, not RL-10 related.
« Last Edit: 10/16/2012 02:59 PM by Galactic Penguin SST »
Chinese spaceflight is a cosmic riddle wrapped in a galactic mystery inside an orbital enigma... - (not) Winston Churchill

Offline AstroBrewer

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Re: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - October 30, 2012
« Reply #3 on: 10/16/2012 05:33 PM »
According to this article the launch is on hold pending results of the investigation. 

http://www.spacenews.com/launch/121012-shelton-investigation-delta-anomaly.html

Offline Prober

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Re: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - October 30, 2012
« Reply #4 on: 10/16/2012 05:49 PM »
small but available.

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Offline Ben the Space Brit

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Re: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - October 30, 2012
« Reply #5 on: 10/17/2012 06:23 PM »
I'm genuinely surprised to hear of a possible Atlas-V stand-down.  Is this just precautionary until they clear common RL-10 components between the A-4 and B-2 versions or do they have genuine reason to believe the fault might affect the Centaur too?

Worst case scenario: with the possibility of a Falcon-9 stand-down due to the Merlin-1C malfunction on SpX-1, the US might be left without a medium launcher for an unspecified period of time.
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Offline WHAP

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Re: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - October 30, 2012
« Reply #6 on: 10/17/2012 06:26 PM »
Last time there was an RL-10 issue both EELV's were down until it was resolved, at least to a point.  I wouldn't be surprised if the same situation exists here.
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Offline Prober

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Re: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - October 30, 2012
« Reply #7 on: 10/17/2012 06:34 PM »
Last time there was an RL-10 issue both EELV's were down until it was resolved, at least to a point.  I wouldn't be surprised if the same situation exists here.

Was thinking the X-37B might be "launchable" even with issues regarding the RL-10. 

Since the X-37B can raise orbits and return for another mission the only loss might be loss of time in orbit/Mission duration.

Would the RL-10 issue be such a concern to ground even with my thinking above.  Is the concern a possible LOM or more procedural ?
« Last Edit: 10/17/2012 06:41 PM by Prober »
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Offline Jim

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Re: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - October 30, 2012
« Reply #8 on: 10/17/2012 06:43 PM »
All depends on the performance margin.  If it is zero with non degraded engine, then LOM is most likely.  Also, X-37 is not unique in the ability to change orbit.

And, no it would not be "launchable", they aren't going to take the risk
« Last Edit: 10/17/2012 06:44 PM by Jim »

Online jacqmans

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Re: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - October 30, 2012
« Reply #9 on: 10/17/2012 06:57 PM »
2 questions:

* When did OTV-3 arrive in Florida (astrotech ) ?

* When will OTV-3 be transported to the launch pad ?


Thanks

Offline mheney

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Re: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - October 30, 2012
« Reply #10 on: 10/17/2012 07:11 PM »
Do we know if this is a new X-37B, or a reflight of one of the first two?

Offline Jim

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Re: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - October 30, 2012
« Reply #11 on: 10/17/2012 07:18 PM »
It has been stated as reflight

Offline Prober

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Re: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - October 30, 2012
« Reply #12 on: 10/17/2012 08:24 PM »
Do we know if this is a new X-37B, or a reflight of one of the first two?

an article on another site said its a reflight to confirm Jim, but it does have some mods.  Expected as its still a test model.

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Offline jcm

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Re: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - October 30, 2012
« Reply #13 on: 10/18/2012 01:24 AM »
It has been stated as reflight

specifically, I think they've said it's a reflight of the first flight vehicle
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Offline Ronsmytheiii

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Re: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - October 30, 2012
« Reply #14 on: 10/18/2012 01:32 AM »
This flight MIGHT land at KSC:

Quote
The military’s mysterious mini-shuttle operations might be consolidated on Florida’s Space Coast, and the upcoming third flight of the Air Force vehicle might land at Kennedy Space Center’s three-mile shuttle runway.

http://www.floridatoday.com/article/20120928/SPACE/309280017/Mini-shuttle-X-37B-talk-stirs-optimism-Space-Coast

Should at least save time/money/infrastructure transporting back from the West Coast. Would think that the USAF would push for the skip strip on CCAFS, but guess it is too short.
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Online douglas100

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Re: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - October 30, 2012
« Reply #15 on: 10/18/2012 09:21 AM »

Should at least save time/money/infrastructure transporting back from the West Coast. Would think that the USAF would push for the skid strip on CCAFS, but guess it is too short.

Why wouldn't they use the Shuttle runway?
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Offline Ben the Space Brit

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Re: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - October 30, 2012
« Reply #16 on: 10/18/2012 09:59 AM »
Purely FWIW, I wonder if this is going to be a 'display and show off' mission that will be more 'public' than the other two.  After all, there really can't be much to test except reuse on this flight.  Maybe they want a day landing at CCAFS as a crowd pleaser.

(Silently wishes for rocket-cams on this launch)
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Offline Zed_Noir

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Re: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - October 30, 2012
« Reply #17 on: 10/18/2012 01:17 PM »
Purely FWIW, I wonder if this is going to be a 'display and show off' mission that will be more 'public' than the other two.  After all, there really can't be much to test except reuse on this flight.  Maybe they want a day landing at CCAFS as a crowd pleaser.


Could be an entirely new suite of sensors.

Online Galactic Penguin SST

Re: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - November 13, 2012
« Reply #18 on: 10/20/2012 03:25 AM »
New update from ULA's Facebook account:

The launch of an Atlas V carrying the OTV-3 payload for the U.S. Air Force is rescheduled for Nov. 13. United Launch Alliance continues to collect and analyze data observed during the recent Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) IIF-3 launch. While the mission successfully placed the GPS satellite in a precise orbit, a lower than normal chamber pressure was observed on the Delta IV RL10 upper stage engine. Although the Atlas V that will launch OTV-3 utilizes a different model of the RL10 engine, ULA leadership and the Air Force have decided to postpone the currently scheduled launch to allow an additional two weeks for the flight data anomaly investigation to progress to a point that will enable a thorough crossover assessment for the OTV launch to be completed. ULA is in close communication with the Air Force regarding the flight data anomaly investigation and will continue to ensure that a complete review is completed to reliably launch our customer's mission.
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Online Chris Bergin

Re: Atlas V 501 - X-37B OTV-3 - November 13, 2012
« Reply #19 on: 10/20/2012 01:57 PM »
ULA Statement

Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla. (Oct. 19, 2012) -- The launch of an Atlas V carrying the OTV-3 payload for the U.S. Air Force is rescheduled for Nov. 13. United Launch Alliance continues to collect and analyze data observed during the recent Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) IIF-3 launch. While the mission successfully placed the GPS satellite in a precise orbit, a lower than normal chamber pressure was observed on the Delta IV RL10 upper stage engine. Although the Atlas V that will launch OTV-3 utilizes a different model of the RL10 engine, ULA leadership and the Air Force have decided to postpone the currently scheduled launch to allow an additional two weeks for the flight data anomaly investigation to progress to a point that will enable a thorough crossover assessment for the OTV launch to be completed. ULA is in close communication with the Air Force regarding the flight data anomaly investigation and will continue to ensure that a complete review is completed to reliably launch our customer's mission.


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