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Commercial and US Government Launch Vehicles => Astra => Topic started by: zubenelgenubi on 09/13/2020 07:25 pm

Title: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: zubenelgenubi on 09/13/2020 07:25 pm
https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1304636706784645120 (https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1304636706784645120)
Quote
We are excited to have made a ton of progress on our first of three attempts on our path to orbit! We are incredibly proud of our team; we will review the data, make changes and launch Rocket 3.2, which is nearly complete.

https://twitter.com/StephenClark1/status/1304852209860042753 (https://twitter.com/StephenClark1/status/1304852209860042753)
Quote
In a virtual press briefing, Astra officials say the guidance system issue that introduced a roll oscillation on the Rocket 3.1 flight last night will likely be fixable with a software update.

Astra says the next launch with Rocket 3.2 is likely before the end of the year.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NLT end of 2020?
Post by: Ken the Bin on 11/14/2020 03:33 am
Astra is apparently aiming for December 7 through December 18, 19:00 - 22:30 UTC each day.

Quote
Launch dates/times and NOTMAR and water area restrictions for Astra – P128

Mission P128 will launch from Alaska Aerospace’s Pacific Spaceport Complex Alaska (PSCA) Launch Pad LP-3B at
Narrow Cape, Kodiak, Alaska with a window of 07 December - 18 December 2020 (local).

Each day will have a launch time window of 1000 – 1330 hours Alaska Standard Time (1900 – 2230 hours UTC), which
encompasses debris times, on a launch azimuth of approximately 195 degrees.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NLT end of 2020?
Post by: otter on 11/23/2020 08:01 am
NOTAM

!FDC 0/4332 ZAN AK..AIRSPACE KODIAK, AK..TEMPORARY FLIGHT RESTRICTIONS PURSUANT TO 14 CFR SECTION 91.143
TEMPORARY FLIGHT RESTRICTIONS ARE IN EFFECT WI AREA BOUNDED BY
572303.09N/1524434.09W TO 573028.77N/1524723.50W TO
573614.81N/1524340.66W TO 574037.92N/1521145.24W TO
573115.78N/1514726.02W TO 572645.86N/1515320.99W TO
571612.68N/1515542.66W TO 570952.47N/1522235.09W TO
570613.17N/1523033.16W TO 565809.82N/1524016.59W TO
565530.70N/1525454.50W TO POINT OF ORIGIN
SFC-UNL DUE TO ROCKET LAUNCH ACT.
ANCHORAGE /ZAN/ ARTCC TEL 907-269-1103 IS THE FAA CDN FACILITY.
DLY 1900-2230 2012071900-2012182230
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET December 7, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: FutureSpaceTourist on 11/25/2020 05:01 pm
https://twitter.com/astra/status/1331658996525064199

Quote
Things are heating up! Here’s a look at Rocket 3.2’s final static fire test ahead of our December 7th launch. 
 
Rocket 3.2 is powered by five Delphin electric-pump-fed engines. Made in-house, each engine produces over 6,500 lbs. of thrust.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET December 7, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: Ken the Bin on 12/03/2020 05:02 am
Not really any new information, but here's the notice that just came from the NGA.

Quote from: NGA
030520Z DEC 20
NAVAREA XII 547/20(16,19).
GULF OF ALASKA.
NORTH PACIFIC.
ALASKA.
1. HAZARDOUS OPERATIONS, ROCKET LAUNCHING
   071900Z TO 072230Z DEC, ALTERNATE
   1900Z TO 2230Z DAILY 08 THRU 18 DEC
   IN AREAS BOUND BY:
   A. 57-25-33N 152-30-08W, 57-26-31N 152-29-42W,
      57-25-44N 152-20-52W, 57-29-08N 152-17-37W,
      57-26-31N 152-06-11W, 54-39-35N 153-28-13W,
      54-40-40N 153-43-32W.
   B. 44-49-26N 158-54-28W, 44-18-19N 156-09-28W,
      40-39-53N 157-24-22W, 41-15-40N 160-08-24W.
2. CANCEL THIS MSG 182330Z DEC 20.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET December 7, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: otter on 12/04/2020 03:42 pm
!FDC 0/9961 ZAN AK..AIRSPACE KODIAK, AK..TEMPORARY FLIGHT
RESTRICTIONS PURSUANT TO 14 CFR SECTION 91.143
TEMPORARY FLIGHT RESTRICTIONS ARE IN EFFECT WI AN AREA BOUNDED BY
572303.09N/1524434.09W TO 573028.77N/1524723.50W TO
573614.81N/1524340.66W TO 574037.92N/1521145.24W TO
573115.78N/1514726.02W TO 572645.86N/1515320.99W TO
571612.68N/1515542.66W TO 570952.47N/1522235.09W TO
570613.17N/1523033.16W TO 565809.82N/1524016.59W TO
565530.70N/1525454.50W TO POINT OF ORIGIN
SFC-UNL DUE TO ROCKET LAUNCH ACT.
ANCHORAGE /ZAN/ ARTCC TEL 907-269-1103 IS THE FAA
CDN FACILITY.
DLY 1900-2230 2012101900-2012182230
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET December 10, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: FutureSpaceTourist on 12/04/2020 09:59 pm
https://twitter.com/astra/status/1334995451527884800

Quote
🚀 Update: Rocket 3.2 will be launching no earlier than Dec 10th with a launch window from 11am to 2pm PT
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 11, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: FutureSpaceTourist on 12/08/2020 06:35 pm
https://twitter.com/nextspaceflight/status/1336390895151681537

Quote
The launch has slipped to Dec. 11, per temporary flight restrictions.
https://tfr.faa.gov/save_pages/detail_0_1349.html

Edit to add:

https://twitter.com/astra/status/1336410870629298176

Quote
🚀 Update: Rocket 3.2 will be launching no earlier than Dec 11th with a launch window from 11am to 2pm PT
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 11, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: FutureSpaceTourist on 12/10/2020 05:10 pm
https://twitter.com/astra/status/1337095556389171201

Quote
Saturn and Jupiter have joined us for tomorrow's launch of Rocket 3.2 😍

Photos by John Kraus
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 11, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: Mammutti on 12/10/2020 05:54 pm
https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1337106307371786240

Quote from: Astra
We will live tweet, but no livestream this time. We aim to turnaround a video shortly after flight.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 11, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: zubenelgenubi on 12/11/2020 05:13 pm
We're 47 minutes before from the launch window opening; as of this posting there is no new Astra Tweet.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 11, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: trimeta on 12/11/2020 05:14 pm
We're 47 minutes from the launch window opening; as of this posting there is no new Astra Tweet.
I think your timezones are a bit off, the launch window doesn't open for another 45 minutes. But they were supposed to release the press kit 15 minutes ago, and haven't so far.

Edit: Oh, you meant "from" as in "until," not "since." Sorry.

Edit 2: And now we've got the press kit (https://astra.com/press-kit/).
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 11, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: vaporcobra on 12/11/2020 05:32 pm
Launch thread

https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1337461265497649152
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 11, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: Steven Pietrobon on 12/11/2020 05:55 pm
Here's a crappy pdf version of the online press kit. If anyone can do a better job, please post it!
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 11, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: Steven Pietrobon on 12/11/2020 06:00 pm
Launch window is now open. Last time, we had tweets into the countdown so there could be a delay, as we have not seen any new tweets.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 11, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: zubenelgenubi on 12/11/2020 06:06 pm
Launch window is now open, so launch should be happening about now.

We haven't seen any new Astra Tweet "launch thread" posts yet.

If their Tweet statement is true, then there must be a delay further into the launch window.
Quote from: Tweet
We will begin tweeting at T-15 minutes!
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 11, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: Steven Pietrobon on 12/11/2020 07:48 pm
Scrub!

https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1337499321864896512

"We are standing down today due to extreme upper-level wind shear and triggered lightning. We have daily launch opportunities through Dec 18th"
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - Dec 13, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: input~2 on 12/11/2020 09:09 pm
12/102 (A5038/20) - AIRSPACE DCC ASTRA P128 STNR ALT RESERVATION WI AN
AREA DEFINED AS 4045N15921W TO 4116N16009W TO 4449N15853W TO
4505N15756W TO 5010N15606W TO 5723N15245W TO 5730N15247W TO
5736N15244W TO 5740N15236W TO 5740N15224W TO 5738N15212W TO
5733N15202W TO 5724N15155W TO 5656N15203W TO 5609N15224W TO
4959N15507W TO 4456N15659W TO 4418N15610W TO 4039N15724W TO
4029N15831W TO POINT OF ORIGIN AND WI AN AREA DEFINED AS
3807N16006W TO 3801N15926W TO 3739N15934W TO 2847N16208W TO
2851N16234W TO POINT OF ORIGIN
SFC-UNL. 13 DEC 19:00 2020 UNTIL 13 DEC 22:30 2020. CREATED: 11 DEC 13:03 2020

and also

GULF OF ALASKA.
NORTH PACIFIC.
ALASKA.
1. HAZARDOUS OPERATIONS, ROCKET LAUNCHING
071900Z TO 072230Z DEC, ALTERNATE
1900Z TO 2230Z DAILY 08 THRU 18 DEC
IN AREAS BOUND BY:
A. 57-25-33N 152-30-08W, 57-26-31N 152-29-42W,
57-25-44N 152-20-52W, 57-29-08N 152-17-37W,
57-26-31N 152-06-11W, 54-39-35N 153-28-13W,
54-40-40N 153-43-32W.
B. 44-49-26N 158-54-28W, 44-18-19N 156-09-28W,
40-39-53N 157-24-22W, 41-15-40N 160-08-24W.
2. CANCEL THIS MSG 182330Z DEC 20.//

Authority: AKAEROSPACE 102306Z NOV 20.

Date: 030520Z DEC 20
Cancel: 18233000 Dec 20
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 13, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: FutureSpaceTourist on 12/11/2020 10:17 pm
https://twitter.com/astra/status/1337536590646661121

Quote
🚀 Launch update: due to weather, our next opportunity will be on Monday, Dec 14th. In the meantime, enjoy this aerial view from @johnkrausphotos
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 14, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: input~2 on 12/14/2020 02:13 pm
NOTAMs active for December 15,16 and 17 from 1900 to 2230 UTC, not for December 14
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 14, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: FutureSpaceTourist on 12/14/2020 05:33 pm
https://twitter.com/astra/status/1338552294632091649

Quote
🚀Launch update: due to weather, our next opportunity will be on Tuesday, Dec 15th
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 15, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: zubenelgenubi on 12/15/2020 05:06 pm
Now less than 1 hour to the launch window open; no update from Astra.
(An update Tweet may only come 15 minutes before launch.)
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 15, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: Steven Pietrobon on 12/15/2020 06:00 pm
Launch window is now open. No word from Astra yet.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 15, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: FutureSpaceTourist on 12/15/2020 07:42 pm
https://twitter.com/astra/status/1338947241180983296

Quote
We've entered terminal count! T-15 minutes
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 15, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: FutureSpaceTourist on 12/15/2020 07:51 pm
https://twitter.com/astra/status/1338949761257205761

Quote
We are GO for launch! T-5 minutes
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 15, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: Steven Pietrobon on 12/15/2020 07:55 pm
https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1338950746235006977

"Rocket is on internal control. T-60 seconds"
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 15, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: FutureSpaceTourist on 12/15/2020 07:56 pm
https://twitter.com/astra/status/1338950928041345024

Quote
T-0 LIFT OFF!
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 15, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: Steven Pietrobon on 12/15/2020 07:57 pm
https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1338951096014794752

"T+1m MAX-Q!!!!!"
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 15, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: FutureSpaceTourist on 12/15/2020 07:57 pm
https://twitter.com/astra/status/1338951314311503874
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 15, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: Steven Pietrobon on 12/15/2020 07:58 pm
https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1338951452929138688

"STAGE SEPARATION CONFIRMED!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 15, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: ncb1397 on 12/15/2020 07:59 pm
No way...
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 15, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: lrk on 12/15/2020 08:00 pm
Now, did the upper stage engine actually fire? 
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 15, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: Rocketdog2116 on 12/15/2020 08:01 pm
Taking an awful long time to confirm stage two ignition. This sudden pause in updates is not promising.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 15, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: Steven Pietrobon on 12/15/2020 08:01 pm
Yes, but was it under power or on a ballistic trajectory?

https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1338952225175957504

"KARMAN LINE PASSED!!!!!!!"
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 15, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: Rocketdog2116 on 12/15/2020 08:01 pm
I spoke too soon go go go
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 15, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: lrk on 12/15/2020 08:03 pm
https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1338952225175957504

"KARMAN LINE PASSED!!!!!!!"

Doesn't absolutely imply that the upper stage is actually firing, but the number of exclamation points indicates that things are probably still working to plan  :D
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 15, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: Citabria on 12/15/2020 08:03 pm
No more updates. They wore out their exclamation point.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - NET Dec 15, 2020 (19:00 UTC)
Post by: Rocketdog2116 on 12/15/2020 08:06 pm
My bet is made it to space but not orbit. They didn't call ignition or fairing sep. And didn't say if it was under power to pass the Karman line. Plus if it took 5 minutes to get there it had to be super shallow unless they got too excited to post.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Jrcraft on 12/15/2020 08:06 pm
Quote
It ignited
https://twitter.com/SciGuySpace/status/1338952612972998657
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: lrk on 12/15/2020 08:07 pm
Should be SECO around now if it did fire successfully...
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Steven Pietrobon on 12/15/2020 08:10 pm
Should be SECO around now if it did fire successfully...

SECO was planned at T+8:32, and we are now T+15 minutes, with no news from Astra. Not looking good.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: zubenelgenubi on 12/15/2020 08:12 pm
Do we have an accurate T-0 time?  I estimated by the Tweet timestamps.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:07 UTC)
Post by: Steven Pietrobon on 12/15/2020 08:15 pm
Do we have an accurate T-0 time?  I estimated by the Tweet timestamps.

The tweet time for T-0 was 7:25 am my time (I have my clock synchronised to US standard time), which would put it at 20:55 UTC.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Mammutti on 12/15/2020 08:18 pm
https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1338956481371115521
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: lrk on 12/15/2020 08:18 pm
Does that mean orbit? 

Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Steven Pietrobon on 12/15/2020 08:20 pm
Does that mean orbit?

I don't believe so. These are probably the views heading for the drink. The images ware taken at T+8 minutes, about 30 seconds before expected SECO.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: trimeta on 12/15/2020 08:21 pm
https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1338956481371115521
That first picture looks fishy to me.

Wait, did I say "fishy"? I meant "fisheye."
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Jrcraft on 12/15/2020 08:23 pm
look at the timestamp on the image. If we had liftoff at 20:55 and this was taken at 21:03, that's 8 minutes later. The engine still looks warm too.

(Though it could just be on a suborbital trajectory at T+8 minutes.)
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: zubenelgenubi on 12/15/2020 08:23 pm
Does that mean orbit?
I don't believe so. These are probably the views heading for the drink.
My >guess< would be the images were taken near-ish to sub-orbital apogee.  On the way to Davy Jones' locker.

The second stage engine could have fired for full-duration, but if the stage did not have the proper attitude during the full duration of the second stage burn: no orbit.

IF that is the case, I wonder where it did/will come down?  Not in the NOTAMed areas.  But I wouldn't worry about debris conking somebody on the head.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: ShaunML09 on 12/15/2020 08:26 pm
Skeptical they made orbit (otherwise would have said so with those pictures but...)

https://twitter.com/wikkit/status/1338956638770909185
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Mammutti on 12/15/2020 08:26 pm
https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1338958581983367168

Quote from: Astra
HUGE SUCCESS!!!!!!! 

Flight video, data, and more details to follow!
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: lrk on 12/15/2020 08:29 pm
Well, regardless of whether they made it to orbit today, congratulations are still in order, making it way further than any of their previous attempts. A good first stage burn, stage sep and upper stage ignition are still all huge milestones and proves that they are a serious contender in the smallsat launch marketplace - only a few companies are able to say that. 

On a side-note if it turns out they didn't reach orbit, I'm noticing an ironic similarity between Astra's orbital attempts and SpaceX's early F1 test flights - liftoff with an engine shutdown and impact shortly after liftoff, followed by almost making it on the next flight.  One must hope that the next flight won't end in a failure at stage separation...  ::)
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: zubenelgenubi on 12/15/2020 08:31 pm
Quote from: Astra
HUGE SUCCESS!!!!!!! 

Flight video, data, and more details to follow!
I hate to be a negative Nancy, but huge success (x!) does not necessarily = anything making orbit.

For all the launch and ascent steps to have occurred, and on-time, is a great stride forward over the previous Rocket attempts.

We shall see.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Steven Pietrobon on 12/15/2020 08:35 pm
Well, regardless of whether they made it to orbit today, congratulations are still in order, making it way further than any of their previous attempts. A good first stage burn, stage sep and upper stage ignition are still all huge milestones and proves that they are a serious contender in the smallsat launch marketplace - only a few companies are able to say that. 

There was no official confirmation of second stage ignition.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: FutureSpaceTourist on 12/15/2020 08:37 pm
https://twitter.com/thesheetztweetz/status/1338960965753315331

Quote
Astra says they are "getting final data confirmation" on whether Rocket 3.2 reached orbit.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: lrk on 12/15/2020 08:37 pm
Well, regardless of whether they made it to orbit today, congratulations are still in order, making it way further than any of their previous attempts. A good first stage burn, stage sep and upper stage ignition are still all huge milestones and proves that they are a serious contender in the smallsat launch marketplace - only a few companies are able to say that. 

There was no confirmation of second stage ignition.

There was from Eric Berger.  Not sure about his source, but he's usually right.

https://twitter.com/SciGuySpace/status/1338952612972998657

Edit: and if they are waiting for final data on whether they did make it, then there obviously was a mostly-nominal S2 burn.  That also explains the ambiguous tweets...
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Steven Pietrobon on 12/15/2020 08:40 pm
twitter.com/thesheetztweetz/status/1338960965753315331

Quote
Astra says they are "getting final data confirmation" on whether Rocket 3.2 reached orbit.

If they had video, surely they would know if they had made orbit from onboard telemetry giving inertial velocity and altitude.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: zubenelgenubi on 12/15/2020 08:42 pm
Does Astra have any Loss of Signal zones in receiving transmissions from the upper stage?

That could be the reason for the ambiguity: nobody knows yet.

Reference: Discoverer 1 (https://space.skyrocket.de/doc_sdat/discoverer-1.htm)
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Steven Pietrobon on 12/15/2020 08:47 pm
look at the timestamp on the image. If we had liftoff at 20:55 and this was taken at 21:03, that's 8 minutes later. The engine still looks warm too.

(Though it could just be on a suborbital trajectory at T+8 minutes.)

The engine nozzle should be glowing brightly, which is not the case here. It is slightly red, so it could have been cooling down after perhaps an early shutdown.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Rocketdog2116 on 12/15/2020 08:51 pm
look at the timestamp on the image. If we had liftoff at 20:55 and this was taken at 21:03, that's 8 minutes later. The engine still looks warm too.

(Though it could just be on a suborbital trajectory at T+8 minutes.)

The engine nozzle should be glowing brightly, which is not the case here. It is slightly red, so it could have been cooling down after perhaps an early shutdown.
Granted we don't know how bright it should be. It's a really small engine. Plus it's in direct sunlight. But you're probably right  that they didn't quite make it or just barely made it. 
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: PM3 on 12/15/2020 08:52 pm
Does Astra have any Loss of Signal zones in receiving transmissions from the upper stage?

AFAIR yes. There was some comment about that in the DARPA Launch Challenge webcast.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: brussell on 12/15/2020 09:05 pm
https://twitter.com/thesheetztweetz/status/1338960965753315331

Quote
Astra says they are "getting final data confirmation" on whether Rocket 3.2 reached orbit.

Gossip is that they didn't make orbit by a few seconds. Some "fixable" anomaly.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: pb2000 on 12/15/2020 09:17 pm
Gossip is that they didn't make orbit by a few seconds. Some "fixable" anomaly.
Negative perigee or will they maybe eek out a few orbits??
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Rocketdog2116 on 12/15/2020 09:30 pm
If it did make orbit it should be completing its first orbit around now.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: brussell on 12/15/2020 09:34 pm
Gossip is that they didn't make orbit by a few seconds. Some "fixable" anomaly.
Negative perigee or will they maybe eek out a few orbits??

Negative perigee. Or I should say, less than Earth radius :)
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Yellowstone10 on 12/15/2020 09:46 pm
500 meters per second short, alas.

https://twitter.com/lorengrush/status/1338977683594731523

Quote
Chris Kemp on Astra's flight: "After reaching an altitude of 390 kilometers, which was our nominal orbital altitude, we reached a velocity of 7.2 kilometers per second... short of the orbital velocity of 7.68 kilometers per second."
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: brussell on 12/15/2020 09:53 pm
500 meters per second short, alas.

https://twitter.com/lorengrush/status/1338977683594731523

Quote
Chris Kemp on Astra's flight: "After reaching an altitude of 390 kilometers, which was our nominal orbital altitude, we reached a velocity of 7.2 kilometers per second... short of the orbital velocity of 7.68 kilometers per second."

Interesting. At 5-6 G's which is typical at that point that's 8s-10s short. Sounds about right.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Yellowstone10 on 12/15/2020 09:57 pm
Interesting. At 5-6 G's which is typical at that point that's 8s-10s short. Sounds about right.

Per Michael Sheetz, Astra said the upper stage shut down around T+6:00, which seems more than 8-10 seconds short of a usual launch timeline? Could point to a lower-thrust upper stage, but I don't know what nominal SECO would have been.

https://twitter.com/thesheetztweetz/status/1338977719799963654

Quote
Rocket 3.2 reached Max Q at about T+00:57 seconds.
MECO at T+02:22
Stage sep at T+02:29
Upper stage shutdown at about T+06:00
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: brussell on 12/15/2020 10:00 pm
Interesting. At 5-6 G's which is typical at that point that's 8s-10s short. Sounds about right.

Per Michael Sheetz, Astra said the upper stage shut down around T+6:00, which seems more than 8-10 seconds short of a usual launch timeline? Could point to a lower-thrust upper stage, but I don't know what nominal SECO would have been.

https://twitter.com/thesheetztweetz/status/1338977719799963654

Quote
Rocket 3.2 reached Max Q at about T+00:57 seconds.
MECO at T+02:22
Stage sep at T+02:29
Upper stage shutdown at about T+06:00

If that's true that's much much shorter than the correct timeline. That doesn't sound right. It wouldn't make 7.2 km/s. Where is he getting that info?
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Yellowstone10 on 12/15/2020 10:02 pm
If that's true that's much much shorter than the correct timeline. That doesn't sound right. It wouldn't make 7.2 km/s. Where is he getting that info?

Ah - the following from Joey Roulette suggests that the 6 minutes was the length of the second-stage burn, not T+6:00:

https://twitter.com/joroulette/status/1338978341660073985

Quote
Astra says its second shot at going to orbit was "historic," and the launch had a "fantastic and flawless count." Rocket hit maxQ 57 secs into flight, and after stage separation, the upper stage engine ignited and shut off nominally six minutes later after expending all its fuel.

That sounds more like it, and a couple tweets downthread he reports that the Astra CEO said they were 12-15 seconds short of nominal.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: brussell on 12/15/2020 10:06 pm
If that's true that's much much shorter than the correct timeline. That doesn't sound right. It wouldn't make 7.2 km/s. Where is he getting that info?

Ah - the following from Joey Roulette suggests that the 6 minutes was the length of the second-stage burn, not T+6:00:

https://twitter.com/joroulette/status/1338978341660073985

Quote
Astra says its second shot at going to orbit was "historic," and the launch had a "fantastic and flawless count." Rocket hit maxQ 57 secs into flight, and after stage separation, the upper stage engine ignited and shut off nominally six minutes later after expending all its fuel.

That sounds more like it, and a couple tweets downthread he reports that the Astra CEO said they were 12-15 seconds short of nominal.

That's it.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: FutureSpaceTourist on 12/15/2020 10:06 pm
twitter.com/sciguyspace/status/1338982770085916678

Quote
Just finished a call with @Astra. Rocket was 0.5 m/s short of orbit. With a better fuel mixture in the upper stage it would have orbited. Apogee of 390km. Rocket 3.3 will carry a payload, and there will be no hardware or software changes. 🚀

https://twitter.com/sciguyspace/status/1338983096159494144

Quote
Also, and this is remarkable, they set up the Alaska launch site with five people, in a week, starting with four shipping containers and a concrete pad. That ... is really hard.

Edit to add:

https://twitter.com/sciguyspace/status/1338983278259429377

Quote
Sorry that should be 0.5 km/s

Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: ZachS09 on 12/15/2020 10:07 pm
I hope the payload fairing DID manage to separate. It wasn’t tweeted out, so that might have been a factor to why orbit wasn’t achieved.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Davidthefat on 12/15/2020 10:08 pm
If that's true that's much much shorter than the correct timeline. That doesn't sound right. It wouldn't make 7.2 km/s. Where is he getting that info?

Ah - the following from Joey Roulette suggests that the 6 minutes was the length of the second-stage burn, not T+6:00:

https://twitter.com/joroulette/status/1338978341660073985

Quote
Astra says its second shot at going to orbit was "historic," and the launch had a "fantastic and flawless count." Rocket hit maxQ 57 secs into flight, and after stage separation, the upper stage engine ignited and shut off nominally six minutes later after expending all its fuel.

That sounds more like it, and a couple tweets downthread he reports that the Astra CEO said they were 12-15 seconds short of nominal.

Was it running rich the entire time?
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Steven Pietrobon on 12/15/2020 10:16 pm
You can fool some of the people some of the time, but you can't fool all of the people all of the time.

https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1338985732338139136

"Rocket launch startup Astra has joined an elite group of companies who can say their vehicle has actually made it to orbital space – earlier than expected."
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: lrk on 12/15/2020 10:20 pm
I hope the payload fairing DID manage to separate. It wasn’t tweeted out, so that might have been a factor to why orbit wasn’t achieved.

If this picture from Scott Manley is representative of the actual configuration in-flight, then I think the upper stage is contained within the fairing.  So I think the fairing would have to seperate for the upper stage to deploy at all? 

This might also explain the apparent slight delay between them reporting MECO and stage separation, if the rocket had to coast for a short period to deploy the fairing and second stage outside of the atmosphere?

https://twitter.com/DJSnM/status/1338957105521311744

By the way I'm curious what the source of that photo was. 
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: brussell on 12/15/2020 10:23 pm
You can fool some of the people some of the time, but you can't fool all of the people all of the time.

https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1338985732338139136

"Rocket launch startup Astra has joined an elite group of companies who can say their vehicle has actually made it to orbital space – earlier than expected."

"orbital space" ? I'm very confused...
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: brussell on 12/15/2020 10:24 pm
There is a very cool video of stage sep and second stage ignition in Linkedin. It will probably be up on twitter soon.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: brussell on 12/15/2020 10:27 pm
Testing if Linkedin @#*(@ shows up here...

https://www.linkedin.com/posts/astraspace_32-activity-6744750524186394624-pTsN/
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Davidthefat on 12/15/2020 10:28 pm
There is a very cool video of stage sep and second stage ignition in Linkedin. It will probably be up on twitter soon.

The little guy accelerated pretty quickly!
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: leovinus on 12/15/2020 10:41 pm
Testing if Linkedin @#*(@ shows up here...

https://www.linkedin.com/posts/astraspace_32-activity-6744750524186394624-pTsN/

Cool video :)
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: FutureSpaceTourist on 12/15/2020 10:46 pm
https://twitter.com/thesheetztweetz/status/1338993460255334401

Quote
Astra launches Rocket 3.2 to space from Kodiak, Alaska: cnbc.com/2020/12/15/ast…

Photos: @astra / @johnkrausphotos
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: brussell on 12/15/2020 11:01 pm
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: brussell on 12/15/2020 11:02 pm
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: FutureSpaceTourist on 12/15/2020 11:09 pm
https://twitter.com/astra/status/1338999451893915649

Quote
A quick video recap of our 8.5-minute flight to space today!
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: zubenelgenubi on 12/15/2020 11:39 pm
Do we have an accurate T-0 time?  I estimated by the Tweet timestamps.

Quote
A quick video recap of our 8.5-minute flight to space today!

By the tweeted video, lift-off was at 20:55:00 UTC.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: zubenelgenubi on 12/15/2020 11:46 pm
You can fool some of the people some of the time, but you can't fool all of the people all of the time.
Quote from: Tweet
Rocket launch startup Astra has joined an elite group of companies who can say their vehicle has actually made it to orbital space – earlier than expected.
"orbital space" ? I'm very confused...
They have constructed a purposely vague sentence to allow the company to muddy the difference between a suborbital flight and an orbital flight.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Closer to Space on 12/15/2020 11:50 pm
Do we have an accurate T-0 time?  I estimated by the Tweet timestamps.

Quote
A quick video recap of our 8.5-minute flight to space today!

By the tweeted video, lift-off was at 20:55:00 UTC.

According to John Kraus pictures taken during liftoff, on Flickr, liftoff time was 20:44:58 UTC :
https://www.flickr.com/photos/astraphotos/50724621862/
Title: Re: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: ncb1397 on 12/16/2020 12:01 am
This is what 390 km altitude and 7.2 km/s looks like. 7.5 km/s gets you around the earth multiple times (at least without accounting for drag). So, that is 96% to orbit.
Title: Re: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Steven Pietrobon on 12/16/2020 12:03 am
Some screengrabs of the launch.
Title: Re: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Steven Pietrobon on 12/16/2020 12:04 am
View from the second stage looking down.
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: randomly on 12/16/2020 01:00 am
You can fool some of the people some of the time, but you can't fool all of the people all of the time.
I think the phrase goes " Although you can fool all the people some of the time, you can fool some of the people all the time. And those are the ones to focus on."
Title: Re: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: brussell on 12/16/2020 01:42 am
I want to think thats TechCrunch being TechCrunch but Astra's PR seems all over the place though
Title: Re: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: TrevorMonty on 12/16/2020 01:50 am
As test I'd call it a success even if it fell slight short of target. All big milestones were ticked off.
Title: Re: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Bogeyman on 12/16/2020 04:38 am
that deserves a new thread that doesn’t begin with the word „Failure“....
Title: Re: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: john smith 19 on 12/16/2020 08:32 am
It's a dreadful old cliche but every failure is a dress rehearsal for success*

So not bad. Pretty good in fact. As long as they can figure out what went wrong and fix it. Still on course for The Aerospace Corps 5/8 rule





*Unless you run out of money first of course.  :(
Title: Re: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: TrevorMonty on 12/16/2020 02:28 pm
It's a dreadful old cliche but every failure is a dress rehearsal for success*

So not bad. Pretty good in fact. As long as they can figure out what went wrong and fix it. Still on course for The Aerospace Corps 5/8 rule





*Unless you run out of money first of course.  :(
The successful parts of this mission should help secure more investment funding if needed.
Title: Re: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: lonestriker on 12/16/2020 02:40 pm
"FAILURE" in the title is definitely not what I would use.  Given that they didn't plan on actually making orbit until flight 3.3, this flight accomplished all of their planned objectives and then some.  Perhaps we can just change "FAILURE" to "Sub-orbital".
Title: Re: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: FutureSpaceTourist on 12/16/2020 03:39 pm
https://youtu.be/KHcLfTItDOg
Title: Re: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: LouScheffer on 12/16/2020 03:50 pm
They were only about 500 m/s short of orbit, and an eastward launch from a low latitude site adds about 400 m/s, compared to polar orbits from Alaska.  So they are very, very close to what is needed.  And a much leaner team than even RocketLab or SpaceX, so lower costs seem possible as well.
Title: Re: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: FutureSpaceTourist on 12/16/2020 06:05 pm
https://twitter.com/astra/status/1339285061053468672

Quote
Rocket 3.2 launched yesterday out of Kodiak, Alaska
 
A thread recapping our flight:

twitter.com/astra/status/1339285067198185473

Quote
Rocket 3.2 had a clean lift-off at 12:55pm PT

https://twitter.com/astra/status/1339285073669996544

Quote
Rocket 3.2 had a clean lift-off at 12:55pm PT

twitter.com/astra/status/1339285079370002433

Quote
At T+57 seconds, Rocket 3.2 reached Max-Q

https://twitter.com/astra/status/1339285108071649282

Quote
At T+145 to T+153, Rocket 3.2 crossed the Karman line entering outer space and successfully completed fairing separation, stage separation and upper stage ignition

twitter.com/astra/status/1339285162421407744

Quote
The upper stage continued to burn for six minutes and 48 seconds, precisely reaching the target apogee of 380 km at 7.2 km/s. Rocket 3.2 then successfully sent a signal simulating deployment of a satellite

https://twitter.com/astra/status/1339285168285048832

Quote
We will be sharing more details on our blog. In the meantime, for more photos from our launch, check out our Flickr account:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/astraphotos/
Title: Re: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: abaddon on 12/16/2020 07:19 pm
Seems very fast for a liquid booster, wonder if they are planning on a stretch to take advantage of that oversized thrust/weight.

Congrats to Astra, a very encouraging success!
Title: Re: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Khadgars on 12/16/2020 07:48 pm
Congrats to Astra on great test flight!  Looking forward to 3.3!
Title: Re: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: edkyle99 on 12/16/2020 07:55 pm
"FAILURE" in the title is definitely not what I would use.  Given that they didn't plan on actually making orbit until flight 3.3, this flight accomplished all of their planned objectives and then some.  Perhaps we can just change "FAILURE" to "Sub-orbital".
Their press kit explicitly listed a "TARGET ORBIT:  Inclination: 98.1 degrees, Altitude: 380 kilometers"

Rocket 3.2 fell short of orbit.  It was a good test flight, but it fell short of its stated goal.  That's a launch vehicle failure. 

 - Ed Kyle
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: catdlr on 12/17/2020 02:14 am
Seems like if SpaceX Starship was a success even though the final step failed, why couldn't we call this Astra flight a success (although partial) ??
Title: Re: Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: matthewkantar on 12/17/2020 03:43 am
Seems like if SpaceX Starship was a success even though the final step failed, why couldn't we call this Astra flight a success (although partial) ??

I think the answer is straight forward. SpaceX was conducting a test where the goal was to advance the state of knowledge of a novel strategy for EDL. The test accomplished that. Astra was trying to orbit a satellite, they didn't.

Am a big fan of Astra, am rooting for them, and they are getting there through a lot of adversity. Calling this a success is just obfuscation. With many dodgy space launch outfits out there, they are doing disservice to themselves by being anything but frank and honest.
Title: Re: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: PM3 on 12/17/2020 08:52 am
"FAILURE" in the title is definitely not what I would use.  Given that they didn't plan on actually making orbit until flight 3.3, this flight accomplished all of their planned objectives and then some.  Perhaps we can just change "FAILURE" to "Sub-orbital".
Their press kit explicitly listed a "TARGET ORBIT:  Inclination: 98.1 degrees, Altitude: 380 kilometers"

Rocket 3.2 fell short of orbit.  It was a good test flight, but it fell short of its stated goal.  That's a launch vehicle failure. 

 - Ed Kyle

It was a failure as much as the last Starship test flight was a "failure". The objective for both was NOT a completely flawless flight, but to make a big progress towards that. Both checked in on that goal.

The customer of this flight was Astra themselves. Customer's wish was to make progress, customer is very happy about the result, that is not a failure.

Astra from the beginnig said that the goal is to make it to orbit within three launches. If Rocket 3.3 does not make it, that would be a failure.

Thread title should be "Partial success" IMHO.
Title: Re: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: Skyrocket on 12/17/2020 09:07 am
"FAILURE" in the title is definitely not what I would use.  Given that they didn't plan on actually making orbit until flight 3.3, this flight accomplished all of their planned objectives and then some.  Perhaps we can just change "FAILURE" to "Sub-orbital".
Their press kit explicitly listed a "TARGET ORBIT:  Inclination: 98.1 degrees, Altitude: 380 kilometers"

Rocket 3.2 fell short of orbit.  It was a good test flight, but it fell short of its stated goal.  That's a launch vehicle failure. 

 - Ed Kyle

It was a failure as much as the last Starship test flight was a "failure". The objective for both was NOT a completely flawless flight, but to make a big progress towards that. Both checked in on that goal.

The customer of this flight was Astra themselves. Customer's wish was to make progress, customer is very happy about the result, that is not a failure.

Astra from the beginnig said that the goal is to make it to orbit within three launches. If Rocket 3.3 does not make it, that would be a failure.

Thread title should be "Partial success" IMHO.

There are a lot of shades of gray between perfect success and absolute failure. In my database for orbital lanches i usually discern between:
* Failure (did not reach orbit)
* partial Failure (did reach orbit, but payload is not usable, either because wrong orbit or damage to the payload)
* partial Success (did reach orbit, albeit not the correct one, payload is usable or can maneuver to correct orbit)
* Success (correct orbit reached, everything is fine)
* Recovery failure (successful launch, but recoverable part was not successfully recovered)

This classification is biased for flights with payload. Test flights without payload do not really fit into this schema.
I do agree, the Astra flight can be considered a qualified success, as it tested nearly all milestones, in my classification it is still listed as a failure. Not quite satisfactory.

For comparison, the Starship SN8 flight is listed as successful launch, but recovery failure.
Title: Re: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: lrk on 12/17/2020 05:52 pm
SpaceX claimed F1 flight 2 as a successful test, as did Rocketlab for Electron's first flight, even though both failed late in the second stage burn and didn't quite reach orbital velocity.  In fact I'm pretty sure Rocket 3.2 got closer than either of those.  So I wouldn't consider Astra calling this test a success to be any different. 

Yes it failed to reach orbit, but I also wouldn't count this failure against their eventual reliability record in the same way as a failure with paying customers when the rocket is considered operational.
Title: Re: FAILURE : Astra Rocket 3.2 - Kodiak - December 15, 2020 (20:55 UTC)
Post by: FutureSpaceTourist on 12/18/2020 12:11 am
https://astra.com/blog/space/

Quote
ASTRA MAKES IT TO SPACE!
DECEMBER 17, 2020

December 15th, 2020 was a historic day for Astra and America, as we joined a small, elite group of privately funded companies that have made it to space. We couldn’t be more proud that our team accomplished this milestone in the face of so much adversity this year. Only three months after our last orbital launch attempt, we were back in Kodiak with the goal of a nominal first stage burn, followed by fairing separation and stage separation. We achieved all of these objectives and more!

Rocket 3.2 lifted off from the Alaskan coast on December 15th at 12:55 pm PT followed by more than two minutes of a successful first stage flight. A few seconds later, we completed a nominal stage separation and ignition of the upper stage, and blasted past the Kármán line, the border between Earth’s atmosphere and outer space. Almost seven minutes later, traveling over 16,000 miles per hour (Mach 21), Astra’s upper stage engine shut down nominally after depleting all of its fuel. Rocket 3.2 precisely achieved its target altitude of 380 kilometers at 7.2 km/sec… just short of orbital velocity of 7.68 km/sec.

Our data shows that all of the rocket’s hardware and software performed exceptionally well, and that only a small adjustment to the mixture ratio of fuel and oxidizer stands between us and our first customer payload delivery in a few months.  Most importantly, this means that Astra can immediately begin delivering for our customers. As of today, we have contracted over two dozen launches, representing over 100 spacecraft.  We are immediately executing our plan to ramp up of rocket production and launch operations.

Our next rocket is nearly complete and we’ll be identifying opportunities based on yesterday’s data on how to further improve the vehicle performance ahead of our next launch. This rapid iteration is unique to Astra and separates us from other launch providers in the industry.

To say that 2020 has been a challenge is an understatement and Astra has shared many of the struggles that much of the world has experienced this year. However, we are grateful to close out this year with the outcome of yesterday’s launch as well as being announced as one of NASA’s mission partners. It is more than we could’ve hoped for as a team. Thanks to our incredible team and their families, as well as our customers, suppliers, partners, investors and all of our fans!

Per Aspera Ad Astra!
Chris and Adam

https://youtu.be/pQG8Z_wko1w