Author Topic: FAILURE: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - September 12, 2020 (03:19 UTC)  (Read 56455 times)

Online FutureSpaceTourist

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https://twitter.com/thesheetztweetz/status/1271570674839179269

Quote
Astra will go again for its first orbital launch, CEO Chris Kemp tells me, with a window set to open on July 20 from Alaska's Pacific Spaceport Complex.

Photo: Astra / John Kraus
« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 08:29 am by input~2 »

Online Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.0 "2 of 3" - Kodiak - NET July 20, 2020
« Reply #1 on: 06/13/2020 01:47 am »
Is this one going to be called Rocket 3.0 (2 of 3)?
« Last Edit: 06/13/2020 09:43 pm by zubenelgenubi »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline Rik ISS-fan

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.0 "2 of 3" - Kodiak - NET July 20, 2020
« Reply #2 on: 06/13/2020 08:31 pm »
Is this one going to be called Rocket 3.0 (2 of 3)?
I think it's still (1 of 3).
edit: I stand corrected.  :-[ :-X  ;)
« Last Edit: 06/14/2020 10:09 am by Rik ISS-fan »

Offline Comga

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.0 "2 of 3" - Kodiak - NET July 20, 2020
« Reply #3 on: 06/13/2020 08:48 pm »
Is this one going to be called Rocket 3.0 (2 of 3)?
I think it's still (1 of 3).
If it doesn't go well, with the next be 1 of 4?
Maybe if they have no more failures in a few years the second half dozen will start with "7 of 9".  ;)
« Last Edit: 06/13/2020 09:44 pm by zubenelgenubi »
What kind of wastrels would dump a perfectly good booster in the ocean after just one use?

Offline gongora

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.0 "2 of 3" - Kodiak - NET July 20, 2020
« Reply #4 on: 06/13/2020 08:59 pm »
Is this one going to be called Rocket 3.0 (2 of 3)?
I think it's still (1 of 3).

1 of 3 is no more, I'd think it would make sense to increment the number
« Last Edit: 06/13/2020 09:45 pm by zubenelgenubi »

Offline edkyle99

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.0 "2 of 3" - Kodiak - NET July 20, 2020
« Reply #5 on: 06/13/2020 09:32 pm »
Is this one going to be called Rocket 3.0 (2 of 3)?
That would be my guess.  "1 of 3" was "damaged" during a March 24 prelaunch test "anomaly" that left a giant burned scar in the landscape that was visible from space later.  Probably an AMOS 6 (or SN4) like event without the YouTube video.

 - Ed Kyle
« Last Edit: 06/13/2020 09:45 pm by zubenelgenubi »

Offline zubenelgenubi

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.0 "2 of 3" - Kodiak - NET July 20, 2020
« Reply #6 on: 06/13/2020 09:46 pm »
I split off the splinter discussion into a new launch thread.

"1 of 3" launch thread

Astra Space (small launch vehicle)
« Last Edit: 06/13/2020 11:01 pm by zubenelgenubi »
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Offline TrevorMonty

Is this one going to be called Rocket 3.0 (2 of 3)?
I think it's still (1 of 3).
If it doesn't go well, with the next be 1 of 4?
Maybe if they have no more failures in a few years the second half dozen will start with "7 of 9".  ;)
If it doesn't go well maybe last thing Vector launches.

Offline southcounty253

Is this one going to be called Rocket 3.0 (2 of 3)?
I think it's still (1 of 3).
If it doesn't go well, with the next be 1 of 4?
Maybe if they have no more failures in a few years the second half dozen will start with "7 of 9".  ;)
If it doesn't go well maybe last thing Vector launches.
Vector's back? ;-)

Offline TrevorMonty

Is this one going to be called Rocket 3.0 (2 of 3)?
I think it's still (1 of 3).
If it doesn't go well, with the next be 1 of 4?
Maybe if they have no more failures in a few years the second half dozen will start with "7 of 9".  ;)
If it doesn't go well maybe last thing Vector launches.
Vector's back? ;-)
My mistake, getting these small LV companies mixed up. Last thing Astra launches.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.0 "2 of 3" - Kodiak - NET July 20, 2020
« Reply #10 on: 06/16/2020 12:21 pm »
twitter.com/astra/status/1272865773204066306

Quote
Despite COVID-19, damage to our launch system, and on-going events affecting our country, the team has been impressively resilient and we’ve confirmed a launch window beginning July 20th out of Kodiak, Alaska!

https://twitter.com/astra/status/1272865773958991872

Quote
Success for this flight means we accomplish enough to make orbit within three flights, which we have defined as at least achieving a nominal first stage burn.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.0 "2 of 3" - Kodiak - NET July 20, 2020
« Reply #11 on: 06/16/2020 02:12 pm »
twitter.com/astra/status/1272894108735090688

Quote
Astra has announced the opening of their next launch window from Kodiak, Alaska: July 20th!

I’m happy to share I’ll be back to photograph the company’s first orbital launch attempt.

Let’s look at some previously-unreleased images I captured for Astra earlier this year:

https://twitter.com/johnkrausphotos/status/1272891116229201921

Quote
In the above photo, Astra’s Rocket 3.0 is seen venting on the day of a launch attempt that was ultimately scrubbed due to weather. The high-contrast of whiteout skies made for a unique frame.

Below, the vehicle is seen during a water suppression system test.

twitter.com/johnkrausphotos/status/1272891130674372617

Quote
A stunning Alaska sunrise with Astra’s Rocket 3.0.

https://twitter.com/johnkrausphotos/status/1272891145870348288

Quote
Pacific Spaceport Complex — Alaska is an incredibly scenic spaceport. This was where I was poised to view liftoff in early March. I’m looking forward to seeing a similar view next month.

All photos: Me for @Astra

Offline TrevorMonty

https://www.cnbc.com/amp/2020/06/16/san-francisco-startup-astra-is-going-for-its-first-orbital-rocket-launch-in-july.html

Astra CEO Chris Kemp told CNBC that that he will restart the company's fundraising in the next month as well, which he says is "a function of the market recovering" for now.


Kemp went into more detail about the company's March anomaly, which destroyed its Rocket 3.0 during launch preparations. He said that, "after a really successful rehearsal," a valve on the rocket stuck open while Astra was letting the fuel out of the rocket.
"It occurred during a phase of the tanking process where the relief valve couldn't relieve the pressure fast enough," Kemp said.
The valve is a piece Astra had built in-house and tested "thousands of times successfully," Kemp noted. It took several months of Astra trying to reproduce the failure before the company found the root cause. In the process of doing that, Astra also put in three levels of redundancy so it won't happen again.

[zubenelgenubi: simplified hyperlink]
« Last Edit: 07/09/2020 11:03 pm by zubenelgenubi »

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.0 "2 of 3" - Kodiak - NET July 20, 2020
« Reply #13 on: 07/16/2020 05:23 pm »
https://twitter.com/astra/status/1283808474313265158

Quote
Volume up!

twitter.com/astra/status/1283808475663892482

Quote
Say hello to Rocket 3.1, our orbital launch vehicle that just passed its 2nd static hotfire test with flying colors. Having completed testing, Rocket 3.1 is now packed up and on its way to Kodiak, Alaska for our first orbital launch attempt!

https://twitter.com/astra/status/1283808476272029697

Quote
We are narrowing and finalizing our launch window - we'll be announcing that window early next week!

Online Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.0 "2 of 3" - Kodiak - NET July 20, 2020
« Reply #14 on: 07/17/2020 08:50 am »
Hopefully this one has better luck! Looks like they are not using the "2 of 3" designation and have changed the name to 3.1.
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline edkyle99

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.0 "2 of 3" - Kodiak - NET July 20, 2020
« Reply #15 on: 07/17/2020 02:41 pm »
Rocket 3.1 appears on first inspection to have the same outer mold line as Rocket 3.0.  I wonder if the remaining 3.0's were scrapped, or upgraded to the 3.1 standard.

 - Ed Kyle

Offline Michael Baylor

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.0 "2 of 3" - Kodiak - NET July 20, 2020
« Reply #16 on: 07/18/2020 05:40 pm »
Quote
The Pacific Spaceport Complex Alaska (PSCA) is planning to conduct a rocket launch from launch pad LP-3B at Narrow Cape, Kodiak, Alaska from 301930-302300 UTC which is 1130-1500 Alaska Daylight Savings Time on July 30th, 2020. If the launch does not occur on July 30th then it will be rescheduled for the following day during the same time window. Rescheduling could continue each day through August 7th, 2020. The following hazardous areas are recommended to be avoided during the daily launch windows. Additional information including the locations of the hazardous areas is available in an enclosure to this LNM.
https://www.navcen.uscg.gov/pdf/lnms/lnm17282020.pdf
« Last Edit: 07/18/2020 05:40 pm by Michael Baylor »

Offline Sam Ho

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 "1 of 2" - Kodiak - NET July 30, 2020
« Reply #17 on: 07/20/2020 10:20 pm »
Quote
Our incredible team got together for one last photo with Rocket 3.1 before it headed up to Kodiak last week!

We're excited to announce that our 6-day launch window starts on August 2nd and is open from 12:30-4pm PT each day!
https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1285269482479300608

Offline xyv

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 "1 of 2" - Kodiak - NET July 30, 2020
« Reply #18 on: 07/21/2020 12:16 am »
Well...two day slip in two days.  Still pretty close and should happen in the next month.  Nice to see everybody modeling good masking behavior...it ain't rocket science folks! :D

Offline Bean Kenobi

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 "1 of 2" - Kodiak - NET August 3, 2020
« Reply #19 on: 07/21/2020 08:17 am »
"our 6-day launch window starts on August 2nd and is open from 12:30-4pm PT" means August 2nd in UTC (PT = UTC+7), date in thread title is false.
« Last Edit: 07/21/2020 08:19 am by Bean Kenobi »

Offline zubenelgenubi

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 "1 of 2" - Kodiak - NET August 3, 2020
« Reply #20 on: 07/21/2020 03:41 pm »
PST = UTC - 8:00
PDT = UTC - 7:00

12:30 pm PT + 7:00 = 1930 UTC (same date)
4:00 pm PT + 7:00 = 2300 UTC (same date)

[All of Alaska, excepting the western Aleutian Islands, is in the Alaska Time Zone.
Standard Time is UTC - 9:00
Daylight Savings Time is UTC - 8:00

Local time at Kodiak is one hour behind that of the Astra facilities in California.]
« Last Edit: 07/21/2020 03:57 pm by zubenelgenubi »
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Offline Bean Kenobi

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 "1 of 2" - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #21 on: 07/21/2020 07:29 pm »
UTC minus 7, of course :)
« Last Edit: 07/21/2020 07:29 pm by Bean Kenobi »

Offline starbase

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 "1 of 2" - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #22 on: 07/23/2020 09:50 pm »
😕 Maybe any locals are willing to set up a camera and stream?

Quote
Chris Kemp, Astra’s co-founder and CEO, said the company will not be providing a live video stream of the launch to the public, but will release video imagery of the flight after it occurs.

“We do not yet employ production, marketing, or communications folks, so our ability to produce a public webcast is limited,” Kemp said in response to questions from Spaceflight Now. “We are focusing all resources on engineering so that we can reach orbit in the next couple of flights.”

Source: https://spaceflightnow.com/2020/07/23/astra-ships-next-small-satellite-launcher-to-alaska-spaceport/

bit.ly/SpaceLaunchCalendar ☆ bit.ly/SpaceEventCalendar

Offline russianhalo117

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #23 on: 07/23/2020 10:23 pm »
Maybe any locals are willing to set up a camera and stream?

Quote
Chris Kemp, Astra’s co-founder and CEO, said the company will not be providing a live video stream of the launch to the public, but will release video imagery of the flight after it occurs.

“We do not yet employ production, marketing, or communications folks, so our ability to produce a public webcast is limited,” Kemp said in response to questions from Spaceflight Now. “We are focusing all resources on engineering so that we can reach orbit in the next couple of flights.”

Source: https://spaceflightnow.com/2020/07/23/astra-ships-next-small-satellite-launcher-to-alaska-spaceport/


Contact Kodiak Daily Mirror (http://www.kodiakdailymirror.com/) and Anchorage Daily News's Kodiak office (https://www.adn.com/) with the launch details to see if they plan to cover it as they tend to cover PSC-A's launches when media access is available. I have one journalist in my family in the state but just switched to the Fairbanks Daily Miner.
« Last Edit: 07/23/2020 10:24 pm by russianhalo117 »

Offline TorenAltair

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #24 on: 07/28/2020 05:51 am »
A TFR in place from August 2 (local time) until August 7 (local time). UTC a day later each.

https://tfr.faa.gov/save_pages/detail_0_5353.html

Offline zubenelgenubi

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #25 on: 07/28/2020 10:25 pm »
Cross-post:
https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1288212813878456320
7:00 pm PDT = 0200 UTC next day
9:00 pm PDT = 0400 UTC next day
« Last Edit: 07/28/2020 10:27 pm by zubenelgenubi »
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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #26 on: 08/02/2020 07:48 am »
https://twitter.com/johnkrausphotos/status/1289703961264455680

Quote
Astra’s Rocket 3.1 launch vehicle is seen at the Pacific Spaceport Complex in Kodiak, Alaska, ahead of its August 2nd-7th launch window.

This mission will be Astra’s first in a series of launches focused on iteratively reaching orbit.

Photo: Me for @Astra

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #27 on: 08/02/2020 04:55 pm »
https://twitter.com/astra/status/1289967263357865984

Quote
It's launch day! Liftoff is scheduled for 7pm PT. Weather in Kodiak is currently 70% favorable for launch. Follow us here for updates!

📸 @johnkrausphotos

Offline zubenelgenubi

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #28 on: 08/02/2020 07:08 pm »
Astra readies small satellite launcher for test flight from Alaska, dated August 1
Quote
The mission is the first of three test flights planned by the privately-funded launch company to eventually reach orbit. Astra calls the launch vehicle awaiting liftoff from Alaska this week “Rocket 3.1.”

Officials said it is unlikely the Rocket 3.1 test flight will enter orbit, although the two-stage vehicle is designed to do so.

Chris Kemp, Astra’s co-founder and CEO, said the company is not intending to hit a “hole-in-one” on the Rocket 3.1 test flight by accomplishing all the milestones necessary to climb into space and accelerate to orbital velocity.

“We intend to accomplish enough to ensure that we’re able to get to orbit after three flights, and for us that means a nominal first-stage burn and getting the upper stage to separate successfully,” Kemp said in a conference call with reporters last week.

Wet Dress Rehearsal completed July 31.

Adam London, the company’s co-founder and chief technology officer: Astra is not flying a payload on Rocket 3.1 in order to increase performance margins on the vehicle, “and because we believe that’s it’s pretty unlikely that it will work.”
« Last Edit: 08/02/2020 07:16 pm by zubenelgenubi »
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Offline TrevorMonty

Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #29 on: 08/02/2020 07:51 pm »
If CEO doesn't have lot of faith his crew and LV how does expect his customers to.


Online Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #30 on: 08/02/2020 11:15 pm »
If CEO doesn't have lot of faith his crew and LV how does expect his customers to.

Its a test flight for crying out loud! He's being realistic on the chances of success and good on Astra for not risking customer payloads on this flight.
« Last Edit: 08/02/2020 11:18 pm by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Offline TrevorMonty

Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #32 on: 08/03/2020 12:11 am »
If CEO doesn't have lot of faith his crew and LV how does expect his customers to.
If CEO doesn't have lot of faith his crew and LV how does expect his customers to.

Its a test flight for crying out loud! He's being realistic on the chances of success and good on Astra for not risking customer payloads on this flight.
He may not be optimistic but could've put a more positive spin on it than this.
“and because we believe that’s it’s pretty unlikely that it will work.”

Offline Comga

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #33 on: 08/03/2020 01:13 am »
Aaand...
They are 10% of the way thru the launch window and the status is.....?
Weather?
Fueling?
Range?
« Last Edit: 08/03/2020 01:13 am by Comga »
What kind of wastrels would dump a perfectly good booster in the ocean after just one use?

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Offline russianhalo117

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #35 on: 08/03/2020 01:32 am »
HOLD! HOLD! HOLD! Entering hold for upper level winds.

https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1290096258154029058?s=19

EDIT: for reason.
« Last Edit: 08/03/2020 03:48 am by russianhalo117 »

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #36 on: 08/03/2020 01:34 am »
This isn't necessarily wind shear but at high altitude wind speeds look frightening.
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Online Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #37 on: 08/03/2020 01:48 am »
So looks like at least 03:00 UTC for launch.

https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1290101666163732480

"Upper air winds are currently in violation, but trending in the right direction. We expect to be at least an hour delayed"
« Last Edit: 08/03/2020 01:52 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Online Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #38 on: 08/03/2020 02:54 am »
New launch time of 03:45 UTC.

https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1290117620092436480

"We have cleared the hold, new T-0 is 845pm PT!"
« Last Edit: 08/03/2020 02:57 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Online Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #39 on: 08/03/2020 03:06 am »
https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1290121481322561537

"T-40 minutes, as the countdown continues, let's admire these photos from @johnkrausphotos"
« Last Edit: 08/03/2020 03:08 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline jacobmarley

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #40 on: 08/03/2020 03:24 am »
any livestream available ?

Online Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #41 on: 08/03/2020 03:26 am »
There is no livestream, only tweets.

https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1290126499161366534

"T-20 minutes, propellant loading is complete"
« Last Edit: 08/03/2020 03:28 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #42 on: 08/03/2020 03:27 am »
Kestrel (Falcon 1 second stage engine) was reported as 6,900 pounds-force (Vac) and Delphin (Rocket 3.1 first stage) is reported as 6,300 lbf (SL); both RP-1/LOX. Are they similar engines?
— 𝐬𝐝𝐒𝐝𝐬 —

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #43 on: 08/03/2020 03:36 am »
Boat on the range!

https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1290128604718755842

"T-12 minutes, but range is currently awaiting clearance of a boat down range"
« Last Edit: 08/03/2020 03:41 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #44 on: 08/03/2020 03:42 am »
Scrub for today.

https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1290130323167014913

"Boat could not be cleared in time for us to launch within the window (ends at 9pm PT), and we have to unfortunately scrub for today"
« Last Edit: 08/03/2020 03:44 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #45 on: 08/03/2020 03:46 am »
Updates tomorrow.

https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1290130824965181440

"The good news is that we have more launch opportunities: stay tuned for updates tomorrow"
« Last Edit: 08/03/2020 03:46 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #46 on: 08/03/2020 03:49 am »
Kestrel (Falcon 1 second stage engine) was reported as 6,900 pounds-force (Vac) and Delphin (Rocket 3.1 first stage) is reported as 6,300 lbf (SL); both RP-1/LOX. Are they similar engines?

No. Kestrel uses a traditional turbine pump pressure fed engine, while Delphin is electric pump fed.
« Last Edit: 08/03/2020 04:06 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #47 on: 08/03/2020 03:55 am »
Here's the Rocket 3.1 press kit. Vehicle details

First Stage: Five 28 kN SL Delphin electric pump fed kerolox engines for 140 kN total.
Second Stage: One 3.1 kN vacuum Aether pressure fed kerolox engine
Total Length: 11.6 m
Diameter: 1.32 m

Mission Timeline
  m:ss
+0:05 Roll program initiated
+0:25 Vehicle clears range
+1:00 Max Q
+2:03 Begin engine throttle down
+2:18 MECO
+2:20 Fairing separation
+2:27 First stage separation
+2:32 Aether ignition
+8:48 SECO
+8:51 Payload deployment signal
« Last Edit: 08/03/2020 04:05 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #48 on: 08/03/2020 03:59 am »
Kestrel (Falcon 1 second stage engine) was reported as 6,900 pounds-force (Vac) and Delphin (Rocket 3.1 first stage) is reported as 6,300 lbf (SL); both RP-1/LOX. Are they similar engines?

No. Kestrel uses a traditional turbine pump fed engine, while Delphin is electric pump fed.

Kestrel was pressure fed. 
What kind of wastrels would dump a perfectly good booster in the ocean after just one use?

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 3, 2020
« Reply #49 on: 08/03/2020 06:10 am »
Boats. Aargh. Any Coast Guard assets in the region that can run interference, or is that outside the purview? Does anyone know if a NOTMAR was issued?

Would have loved to see this candle light up today.


Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 3, 2020
« Reply #50 on: 08/03/2020 07:50 am »
Quite a day for random private boats in spaceflight, between this and the Dragon splashdown.
Wait, ∆V? This site will accept the ∆ symbol? How many times have I written out the word "delta" for no reason?

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 3, 2020
« Reply #51 on: 08/03/2020 04:59 pm »
https://twitter.com/astra/status/1290331230676779008

Quote
🌩️ Update: We won't be making a launch attempt today due to weather (triggered lightning). Our launch window is through August 7th and weather is expected to improve through the week.
« Last Edit: 08/03/2020 04:59 pm by FutureSpaceTourist »

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 4, 2020
« Reply #52 on: 08/03/2020 07:50 pm »
On the subject of their window being through the 7th, they appear to have updated their TFR to go through Saturday the 8th to allow for more opportunities. through Friday to match the launch window.  (Correction: UTC time conversion error on my part, local time is PDT)

TFR: https://tfr.faa.gov/save_pages/detail_0_7923.html

https://twitter.com/SpaceTfrs/status/1290373885834047488?s=20
« Last Edit: 08/03/2020 07:54 pm by Thunderscreech »
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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 4, 2020
« Reply #53 on: 08/03/2020 08:23 pm »
https://twitter.com/johnkrausphotos/status/1290372300148101120

Quote
Astra’s Rocket 3.1 is seen at the Pacific Spaceport Complex in Kodiak, Alaska, with the rising full moon as a backdrop in the early hours of August 3rd, 2020.

Photo: Me for @Astra

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 5, 2020
« Reply #54 on: 08/04/2020 02:37 pm »
Is there an attempt today? TFR starts 6pm local today.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 5, 2020
« Reply #55 on: 08/04/2020 06:02 pm »
https://twitter.com/astra/status/1290707505866092544

Quote
🚀 Update: weather has improved to 60% favorable today! We are hoping to launch tonight and we will provide another update in a few hours

📸 @johnkrausphotos

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 5, 2020
« Reply #56 on: 08/04/2020 10:26 pm »
https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1290771173861543937

Quote
We are GO for tonight's launch attempt! Weather is closely being monitored, follow us live here


 @johnkrausphotos
« Last Edit: 08/04/2020 10:30 pm by Twark_Main »
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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 5, 2020
« Reply #57 on: 08/05/2020 01:21 am »
Holding at T-50 minutes.

https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1290818403020574721

"We are currently on hold at T-50 minutes and troubleshooting a minor issue, more updates to come"
« Last Edit: 08/05/2020 02:10 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 5, 2020
« Reply #58 on: 08/05/2020 02:09 am »
Still investigating the issue.

https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1290832009447657477

"We are still investigating the issue and we'll provide another update in about 30 minutes"
« Last Edit: 08/05/2020 02:10 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 5, 2020
« Reply #59 on: 08/05/2020 02:35 am »
Resolution of issue under test.

https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1290838445435150336

"We believe we have resolved the issue and are running tests to confirm before stepping back into the count"
« Last Edit: 08/05/2020 02:36 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 5, 2020
« Reply #60 on: 08/05/2020 02:53 am »
New T-0 of 03:50 UTC.

https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1290843101435592706

"Testing completed successfully and we are stepping back into count. New T-0 is 850pm PT."
« Last Edit: 08/05/2020 02:54 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 5, 2020
« Reply #61 on: 08/05/2020 03:09 am »
Loading propellant!

https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1290847030777020416

"T-45 minutes, loading propellant

As loading is ongoing, let's admire this helicopter photo of the Kodiak launch site

@johnkrausphotos"
« Last Edit: 08/05/2020 03:10 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 5, 2020
« Reply #62 on: 08/05/2020 03:25 am »
Scrub!

https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1290850980536279040

"Propellant loading is going slower than planned, and we won't have enough time to finish the load and launch before the end of the window (9pm PT). Unfortunately, we will have to scrub today."
« Last Edit: 08/05/2020 03:26 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 5, 2020
« Reply #63 on: 08/05/2020 03:27 am »
https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1290850981320650752

"We will provide another update tomorrow as we have additional launch opportunities through Friday."
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 2, 2020
« Reply #64 on: 08/05/2020 05:43 am »
Here's the Rocket 3.1 press kit. Vehicle details

First Stage: Five 28 kN SL Delphin electric pump fed kerolox engines for 140 kN total.
Second Stage: One 3.1 kN vacuum Aether pressure fed kerolox engine
Total Length: 11.6 m
Diameter: 1.32 m
2020 Seems quite the year for electric pumped rocket engines.
MCT ITS BFR SS. The worlds first Methane fueled FFSC engined CFRP SS structure A380 sized aerospaceplane tail sitter capable of Earth & Mars atmospheric flight.First flight to Mars by end of 2022. Forward looking statements. T&C apply. "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof" R. Simberg."Competitve" means cheaper ¬cheap

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 5, 2020
« Reply #65 on: 08/05/2020 05:45 am »
Loading propellant!

https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1290847030777020416

"T-45 minutes, loading propellant

As loading is ongoing, let's admire this helicopter photo of the Kodiak launch site

@johnkrausphotos"
I never thought of Alaska as so Green.

It put me in mind of New South Wales.
MCT ITS BFR SS. The worlds first Methane fueled FFSC engined CFRP SS structure A380 sized aerospaceplane tail sitter capable of Earth & Mars atmospheric flight.First flight to Mars by end of 2022. Forward looking statements. T&C apply. "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof" R. Simberg."Competitve" means cheaper ¬cheap

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 2020
« Reply #66 on: 08/05/2020 04:53 pm »
https://twitter.com/thesheetztweetz/status/1291053909205749760

Quote
Small rocket builder Astra will not attempt to launch Rocket 3.1 today due to strong upper level winds, CEO Chris Kemp tells me. The company will go for another attempt on Thursday, with the window opening at 10 p.m. ET (02:00 UTC)

Photo: @johnkrausphotos / @Astra

Offline whitelancer64

Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 5, 2020
« Reply #67 on: 08/05/2020 04:59 pm »
Loading propellant!

*snip tweet*

"T-45 minutes, loading propellant

As loading is ongoing, let's admire this helicopter photo of the Kodiak launch site

@johnkrausphotos"
I never thought of Alaska as so Green.

It put me in mind of New South Wales.

Alaska is super nice in the summertime. It can even get hot. It's the rest of the year where the weather will get ya.
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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 2020
« Reply #68 on: 08/05/2020 11:22 pm »
https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1291074514139230208

"Update: weather is 80% unfavorable today and we'll be making our next attempt tomorrow.

As we wait, the juxtaposition of the moon and sun with Rocket 3.1

 @johnkrausphotos"
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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 7, 2020, 02:00 UTC
« Reply #69 on: 08/06/2020 02:53 am »
If all goes according to plan...

We could have an American bi-coastal "two-fer" orbital launch date (August 7 UTC):
This launch;
Starlink/Falcon 9 launch from KSC.
Support your local planetarium! (COVID-panic and forward: Now more than ever.)
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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 7, 2020, 02:00 UTC
« Reply #70 on: 08/06/2020 06:17 pm »
https://twitter.com/astra/status/1291431593995677697

Quote
🚀 Update: weather has improved and we are hoping to launch tonight! Our launch window is 7-9pm PT, follow us here for updates

📸 @johnkrausphotos
« Last Edit: 08/06/2020 06:17 pm by FutureSpaceTourist »

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 7, 2020, 02:00 UTC
« Reply #71 on: 08/07/2020 01:10 am »
Now T-50 minutes.

twitter.com/Astra/status/1291540364923305984

"T-60 minutes, Rocket is vertical! Third time's the charm
Crossed fingers

@johnkrausphotos"
« Last Edit: 08/07/2020 01:28 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 7, 2020, 02:00 UTC
« Reply #72 on: 08/07/2020 01:18 am »
Now T-42 minutes.

twitter.com/Astra/status/1291543667803484160

"T-45 minutes, loading propellant

@johnkrausphotos"
« Last Edit: 08/07/2020 01:19 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 7, 2020, 02:00 UTC
« Reply #73 on: 08/07/2020 01:32 am »
Now T-28 minutes.

twitter.com/Astra/status/1291547536684019712

"T-30 minutes, flight safety checks are complete

@johnkrausphotos"
« Last Edit: 08/07/2020 01:33 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 7, 2020, 02:00 UTC
« Reply #74 on: 08/07/2020 01:47 am »
Holding the count

twitter.com/Astra/status/1291551227088576513

"T-15 minutes, we are briefly holding the count as we top off liquid oxygen"
« Last Edit: 08/07/2020 01:48 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 7, 2020, 02:00 UTC
« Reply #75 on: 08/07/2020 01:57 am »
Estimate launch at 02:10 UTC.

twitter.com/Astra/status/1291553832619528192

"T-14 minutes, we are in terminal count"
« Last Edit: 08/07/2020 02:00 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 7, 2020, 02:00 UTC
« Reply #76 on: 08/07/2020 02:01 am »
Go for poll.

twitter.com/Astra/status/1291554899763724288

"T-10 minutes, go/no-go poll is GO for launch!"
« Last Edit: 08/07/2020 02:01 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 7, 2020, 02:00 UTC
« Reply #77 on: 08/07/2020 02:05 am »
Go for launch.

twitter.com/Astra/status/1291555907483004930

"T-6 minutes, range is GO for launch!"
« Last Edit: 08/07/2020 02:06 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 7, 2020, 02:00 UTC
« Reply #78 on: 08/07/2020 02:09 am »
Estimate launch at 02:11 UTC.

twitter.com/Astra/status/1291556711883448320

"T-3 minutes, propellant load is complete"
« Last Edit: 08/07/2020 02:09 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 7, 2020, 02:00 UTC
« Reply #79 on: 08/07/2020 02:11 am »
Launch should be happening about now.
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 7, 2020, 02:00 UTC
« Reply #80 on: 08/07/2020 02:12 am »
Hold!

twitter.com/Astra/status/1291557714280058880

"Holding/ troubleshooting the water deluge system. Will provide updates shortly"
« Last Edit: 08/07/2020 02:13 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline otter

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Online Steven Pietrobon

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Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline CorvusCorax

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 7, 2020, 02:00 UTC
« Reply #83 on: 08/07/2020 02:47 am »
https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1291564453368979457

Quote
    Lost pressure in our water deluge system. We are going to stand down to fix the issue.
    — Astra (@Astra) August 7, 2020
« Last Edit: 08/07/2020 02:47 am by CorvusCorax »

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 7, 2020, 02:00 UTC
« Reply #84 on: 08/07/2020 02:54 am »
https://twitter.com/planet4589/status/1291560572123779073
Dr McDowell is being very generous.
When Musk heard the price of military grade air conditioning units to supply temperature-regulated dry air to the Falcon 9 fairing, he bought double or triple the capacity in commercial air conditioning units.
Low cost and reliability thru redundancy.
Time is the most precious resource.
That Astra has lost a day of their launch window to their water deluge system is hardly understandable as “getting to know the rocket system”. 
« Last Edit: 08/07/2020 02:55 am by Comga »
What kind of wastrels would dump a perfectly good booster in the ocean after just one use?

Offline ZachS09

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 7, 2020, 02:00 UTC
« Reply #85 on: 08/07/2020 03:05 am »
https://twitter.com/planet4589/status/1291560572123779073
Dr McDowell is being very generous.
When Musk heard the price of military grade air conditioning units to supply temperature-regulated dry air to the Falcon 9 fairing, he bought double or triple the capacity in commercial air conditioning units.
Low cost and reliability thru redundancy.
Time is the most precious resource.
That Astra has lost a day of their launch window to their water deluge system is hardly understandable as “getting to know the rocket system”. 

Wasn't there a similar issue on the first attempt of OCO 2?
Liftoff for St. Jude's! Go Dragon, Go Falcon, Godspeed Inspiration4!

Offline CorvusCorax

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 7, 2020, 02:00 UTC
« Reply #86 on: 08/07/2020 03:56 am »
https://twitter.com/planet4589/status/1291560572123779073
Dr McDowell is being very generous.
When Musk heard the price of military grade air conditioning units to supply temperature-regulated dry air to the Falcon 9 fairing, he bought double or triple the capacity in commercial air conditioning units.
Low cost and reliability thru redundancy.
Time is the most precious resource.
That Astra has lost a day of their launch window to their water deluge system is hardly understandable as “getting to know the rocket system”.

I'd give them some slack.

They still have to make their first orbital launch, that means their virtual list of "unknown unknowns" is really really large, and a lot of stuff pops up unexpected. Remember the crap that happened to SpaceX with F1 - tanks collapsing due to valve malfunctions on the pad in recycles and the like?
Or the recent explosion of Starship SN4 due to quick disconnect malfunction?

Stuff like that can not be planned until it happens. If you try anyway, out of risk-averseness, you spend so much time modelling potential could-be's and worry-abouts you are never actually going to fly.

Naturally the more complicated systems, such as propulsion and avionics might typically get more scrutiny than the seemingly simple stuff like water deluge. Especially if you have limited manpower and a small team, you'd rather have your engineers triple-check the propellant lines first and the pad water lines later, because the first make your vessel blow up and the latter only cost you a day if there's a flaw.

But in the beginning, before you have a dozen launches on your belt and the kinks worked out, the chances of a flaw in the simple systems having been overlooked is just as high as in the complex ones: unknown unknowns can lurk anywhere.

For a launch to succeed, both the simple and the complex systems need to work perfectly.

If this deluge system issue had them stand down a week, or even a month, your comment would be more justified.

But fixing it, then trying again the next day. That's not slower than what SpaceX is doing in Boca Chica right now. It's just right. Also gets them practice at recycling their rocket and pad equipment, which makes stuff flow smoother next time.

I see nothing wrong here :)
« Last Edit: 08/07/2020 04:49 am by CorvusCorax »

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probably a kink in the garden hose. Happens to me all the time.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 8, 2020, 02:00 UTC
« Reply #88 on: 08/08/2020 12:31 am »
https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1291884652894941184
Quote
Update: We are preparing for a launch attempt tonight, but upper level winds are expected to be unfavorable for our launch window that begins at 7pm PT. Hoping weather improves!
***

The original launch campaign window ends with this launch window.
Will the campaign continue on the 9th, etc.?
Or will they take a break of a day or more?

Is there a forecast stating when the winds aloft and/or wind shear will ease?
« Last Edit: 08/08/2020 12:33 am by zubenelgenubi »
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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 8, 2020, 02:00 UTC
« Reply #89 on: 08/08/2020 02:00 am »
The launch window is now open. No word from Astra yet on when or if there will be a launch today.
« Last Edit: 08/08/2020 02:02 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - August 8, 2020, 02:00 UTC
« Reply #90 on: 08/08/2020 02:00 am »
Scrub for the day!

twitter.com/Astra/status/1291917105713963008

"Update: we are standing down due to extreme wind shear, particularly near Max Q. We will have an update soon on our next launch window"
« Last Edit: 08/08/2020 02:01 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline ringsider

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I suspect they are being so careful because it is their last shot. With all the cutbacks and also some recent and quite public, acrimonious departures, it may be that this is the last roll of the dice for Astra. I wish them luck, but some of the issues on this campaign do not bode well.
« Last Edit: 08/08/2020 07:35 am by ringsider »

Offline HMXHMX

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I suspect they are being so careful because it is their last shot. With all the cutbacks and also some recent and quite public, acrimonious departures, it may be that this is the last roll of the dice for Astra. I wish them luck, but some of the issues on this campaign do not bode well.


What departures?  I'll admit to not tracking their status that carefully.

Offline high road

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I suspect they are being so careful because it is their last shot. With all the cutbacks and also some recent and quite public, acrimonious departures, it may be that this is the last roll of the dice for Astra. I wish them luck, but some of the issues on this campaign do not bode well.

You think they're doing a Vector? That would explain how they went to a second launch opportunity so quickly. Well, this does look like how we predicted the eventual confrontation with reality of the 100+ smallsat launchers would go. Those with a lot of hardware are the first to go because they have the highest running costs. Those who are mostly fictional stick around because fantasy doesn't cost a lot.

Fingers crossed for a hail Mary like Falcon 1.

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I suspect they are being so careful because it is their last shot. With all the cutbacks and also some recent and quite public, acrimonious departures, it may be that this is the last roll of the dice for Astra. I wish them luck, but some of the issues on this campaign do not bode well.

What departures?  I'll admit to not tracking their status that carefully.

I'm aware of Roger Carlson, their VP of Launch and distinguished engineer. He was part of the crew that migrated from SpaceX to Virgin Orbit and then later split off when Astra started to ramp up. Adam Brown was part of that same crew and was their Astra's head of structures. Looks like he disappeared before the COVID-culling.

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I suspect they are being so careful because it is their last shot. With all the cutbacks and also some recent and quite public, acrimonious departures, it may be that this is the last roll of the dice for Astra. I wish them luck, but some of the issues on this campaign do not bode well.


What departures?  I'll admit to not tracking their status that carefully.
Ben Brockert, Masten veteran and early Astra hire, recently departed, after tweeting about bad management:

https://twitter.com/wikkit/status/1279127128617807872

July 3: While we were in the middle of integrated vehicle static fire operations, the executive team created and published a list of "toxic employees". Three of the six people in the control room were on the list. Just such a WTF moment. It's hard to not see it as sabotage at this point.

July 28: So ends my tenure at @Astra, I was one of the first hires. Two leadership lessons from the 3.5yr there: a exec that shows characteristics of the “dark triad” will poison everything. Everyone comes out worse in the end, I definitely was a worse person. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dark_triad ... And putting people in technical leadership positions who can’t make decisions and be leaders will mean the entire engineering org will struggle. I hope the work I and others did there will come to something, but on the current course it's hard to see them becoming competitive.

Offline ringsider

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You think they're doing a Vector? That would explain how they went to a second launch opportunity so quickly.

No, Vector was another set of issues entirely.

Astra may have had mishaps but they are trying to build something serious.

They had very poor luck on their timing going public earlier this year, but perhaps had no choice with the DARPA challenge publicity.

Since then it's been one thing after another - missed the DARPA prize, severe cutbacks, a fire, some kind of acrimony and now what looks like some basic issues with ground equipment and possibly a missed window.

We will see. I do wish them luck.
« Last Edit: 08/08/2020 10:56 pm by ringsider »

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https://twitter.com/astra/status/1293221140291149828

Quote
We are still finalizing our launch window, but it looks like our next available opportunity will be later this month
« Last Edit: 08/11/2020 04:23 pm by FutureSpaceTourist »

Offline Ken the Bin

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From the USCG ...
Summary:
Quote from: USCG
The Pacific Spaceport Complex Alaska (PSCA) is planning to conduct a rocket launch from launch pad LP-3B at Narrow Cape, Kodiak, Alaska from 310200-310430 UTC which is 1800-2030 Alaska Daylight Savings Time on August 30th, 2020. If the launch does not occur on August 30th then it will be rescheduled for the following day during the same time window. Rescheduling could continue each day through September 3rd, 2020 (September 4th for UTC).

Offline Thunderscreech

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 30, 2020
« Reply #99 on: 08/25/2020 05:57 pm »
Ben Hallert - @BocaRoad, @FCCSpace, @Spacecareers, @NASAProcurement, and @SpaceTFRs on Twitter

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET Sep. 10/11, 2020
« Reply #100 on: 08/26/2020 06:19 pm »
https://twitter.com/astra/status/1298680156308025345

Quote
🚀 Update: our next launch opportunity is August 30th to September 3rd!

7-930pm Pacific Time each day

Follow us here for updates

📷: @johnkrausphotos
« Last Edit: 08/30/2020 06:41 pm by gongora »

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - NET August 31, 2020 (02:00 UTC)
« Reply #101 on: 08/28/2020 02:55 pm »
https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/1299359051055333377

Quote
Noticed the NOTAM for this launch attempt is no longer active, and a new one posted for Sept. 10-16 local time. Unless the disappearance of the NOTAM is a glitch, it suggests the launch has been postponed.

Edit to add:

https://twitter.com/astra/status/1299423804029100033

Quote
Weather is not looking very good for early next week, so after discussions with the range and FAA we have decided to switch to a new launch window beginning on Sept 10th.

7-930pm Pacific Time each day

More updates to come!
« Last Edit: 08/28/2020 07:10 pm by FutureSpaceTourist »

Offline input~2

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ALASKA – SOUTHCENTRAL – KODIAK/GULF OF ALASKA
CORRECTED NOTICE (The dates and end times have changed): The Pacific Spaceport Complex Alaska (PSCA) is planning to conduct a rocket launch from launch pad LP-3B at Narrow Cape, Kodiak, Alaska from 110200-110500 UTC which is 1800-2100 Alaska Daylight Savings Time on September 10th, 2020. If the launch does not occur on September 10th then it will be rescheduled for the following day during the same time window. Rescheduling could continue each day through September 16th, 2020 (September 17th for UTC).

Offline ChrisGebhardt

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9m
It’s launch day in Kodiak, Alaska!

Rocket 3.1 is ready to make its first orbital launch attempt during our 7:00pm — 9:30pm PT launch window, pending acceptable upper level winds. Live tweeting begins at T-60 minutes

twitter.com/Astra/status/1304201106935824385
« Last Edit: 09/10/2020 11:43 pm by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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4m
Ad astra—together. #BlackLivesMatter

twitter.com/Astra/status/1304207523705049088
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline sdsds

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Rough timeline based on prior attempt:
-At T-45 minutes propellant loading initiated
-At T-20 minutes propellant loading mainly complete
-At T-15 minutes propellant topping
-At T-10 minutes go/no-go poll

— 𝐬𝐝𝐒𝐝𝐬 —

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https://twitter.com/Astra/status/1304225078003998720

"T-55 minutes, rocket is vertical and we are loading propellant"
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Human spaceflight is basically just LARPing now.

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« Last Edit: 09/11/2020 07:55 pm by ringsider »


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« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 12:19 am by ChrisGebhardt »

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - September 12, 2020 (02:00 UTC)
« Reply #113 on: 09/12/2020 01:36 am »
T-24 minutes.
« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 01:37 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - September 12, 2020 (02:00 UTC)
« Reply #114 on: 09/12/2020 02:00 am »
The launch window is now open, but we've not had any announcement that fuelling has started. There might be a delay due to the 30% go weather.
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline zubenelgenubi

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The launch window is now open, but we've not had any announcement that fuelling has started. There might be a delay due to the 30% go weather.
Launch window is 0200 to 0430 UTC.
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Propellant loading has started. Could be 45 to 55 minutes from launch.

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9s
Rocket is vertical and propellant is loading!

twitter.com/Astra/status/1304602638697209857
« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 02:11 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Subject to delays due to weather, etc., launch should be happening in the next 10 minutes.
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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T-15 minutes! Estimate launch at 03:20 UTC.
 
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1m
Winds are looking better and we've entered terminal count! T-15 minutes

twitter.com/Astra/status/1304617017182281729
« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 03:08 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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22s
T-10 minutes. We are GO for launch!

twitter.com/Astra/status/1304618247237431296
« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 03:11 am by Steven Pietrobon »
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35s
T-5 minutes. Final Range is GO!

twitter.com/Astra/status/1304619656829792257
« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 03:16 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - September 12, 2020 (~03:20 UTC)
« Reply #121 on: 09/12/2020 03:19 am »
[email protected]
42s
T-60 seconds! Rocket is on internal control

twitter.com/Astra/status/1304620520516665349
« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 03:20 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - September 12, 2020 (~03:20 UTC)
« Reply #122 on: 09/12/2020 03:20 am »
[email protected]
51s
T-0 LIFT OFF!

twitter.com/Astra/status/1304620705422610432
« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 03:21 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - September 12, 2020 (~03:20 UTC)
« Reply #123 on: 09/12/2020 03:25 am »
I think we're supposed to have had MECO / state separation / S2 ignition.... hopefully I'm just being impatient but the (twitter) silence is ominous...

Edit: but it's still fantastic they got to launch!
« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 03:26 am by gmbnz »

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - September 12, 2020 (~03:20 UTC)
« Reply #124 on: 09/12/2020 03:26 am »
Seco will be at +8:51 if we don't hear anything by T+10 minutes we'll know

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - September 12, 2020 (~03:20 UTC)
« Reply #125 on: 09/12/2020 03:27 am »
Not unexpected, but it didn't make it.

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22s
Successful lift off and fly out, but the flight ended during the first stage burn. It does look like we got a good amount of nominal flight time. More updates to come!

twitter.com/Astra/status/1304622467042820105
« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 03:28 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline Rocketdog2116

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Re: Astra Rocket 3.1 - Kodiak - September 12, 2020 (~03:20 UTC)
« Reply #126 on: 09/12/2020 03:27 am »
RIP Rocket 3.1

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Thanks, Steven, for the live coverage.

And a sincere "Better Luck Next Time" to Astra!
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Offline gmbnz

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Was that rocket the same one which they were planning on launching for DARPA or was it a new one? (I seem to remember something about the other one having an incident on the pad / during testing some time after the DARPA attempt?)

Looking at the positive side:
* They've proven that they're still one of the top two contenders for next company to orbit along with VO
* (presumably) no pad damage this time
* More flight data and operations experience!

I do find it a little concerning that they've launched 3 rockets and are still struggling to get to MECO - on the other hand, maybe this iterative progress is planned. Hopefully this performance is good enough to convince investors to stick with them.

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Was that rocket the same one which they were planning on launching for DARPA or was it a new one? (I seem to remember something about the other one having an incident on the pad / during testing some time after the DARPA attempt?)

Yes, Rocket 3.0 was destroyed on 23 March during a ground accident. Rocket 3.1 is its replacement.
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Great shot of Rocket 3.1 leaving the pad!

twitter.com/Astra/status/1304626075251556353
« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 03:42 am by Steven Pietrobon »
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Offline butters

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Was that rocket the same one which they were planning on launching for DARPA or was it a new one? (I seem to remember something about the other one having an incident on the pad / during testing some time after the DARPA attempt?)
That rocket popped open during a fueling test and was damaged beyond repair. Wasn't the first time they spilled a bunch of kerosene on Kodiak Island. This is, of course, the former stealth startup known only by its federally-mandated environmental remediation documents filed following incidents. Hopefully this time the debris made it out to sea.

Offline ShaunML09

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Some amateur video of the launch/failure ...who seem strangely eager to help after the rocket explosion

https://twitter.com/CultonJennifer/status/1304626860853141505

Offline su27k

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https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1304627336470384640

Quote
Sorry to hear that. I’m sure you’ll figure it out though. Took us four launches to reach orbit. Rockets are hard.

https://twitter.com/Kemp/status/1304631756683841537

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Thanks Elon!  Digging into the data so we can figure this out. Rocket 3.2 is ready to go...
« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 04:55 am by su27k »

Offline jamesh9000

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From the video two posts above, it detonates 9 seconds into the video, and I'd estimate about 15 seconds into flight. I know they weren't expecting to reach orbit, and they'll put a brave face on it, but i'd say they've got to be a bit disappointed with only 15 seconds.

Offline sdsds

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Does it seem to anyone else like the flight termination system was triggered by ... contact with Earth's surface?
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Some amateur video of the launch/failure ...who seem strangely eager to help after the rocket explosion



I took the video and cropped it.  Can't really see the vehicle after engine shutdown but you can see the vehicle for about three seconds before crashing.


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Cropped screen grabs. Vehicle flew for at least 10 seconds before losing thrust and crashing back on Earth. The second photo shows the point where thrust has nearly terminated.
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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.

📸: @johnkrausphotos

https://twitter.com/peter_j_beck/status/1304668087027867655

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Data in this game is so hard won, so big congratulations to the team for pulling down actual flight data from today’s attempt!

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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. @johnkrausphotos

twitter.com/Astra/status/1304636706784645120
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Apparently this was not an orbital attempt:

twitter.com/planet4589/status/1304623025858453506

Quote
Failed to reach orbit; failed during first stage burn. This was @Astra's first orbital launch attempt - better luck next time.

https://twitter.com/wikkit/status/1304667330878865408

Quote
I'm old fashioned and think that to call something an orbital attempt it would need to be capable of making orbit.

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It really puts perspective on how incredible the It’s a Test mission was. Similar technologies and so different outcomes.

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https://twitter.com/astra/status/1304684472453931008

Quote
We have liftoff!

At 8:19pm PT, Rocket 3.1 left the Alaskan coast at Astra’s Kodiak launch site. We are excited to take this meaningful step towards orbit!

Read more on our blog 👇

Quote
WE HAVE LIFTOFF!
SEPTEMBER 12, 2020

At 8:19pm PT, Rocket 3.1 left the Alaskan coast at Astra’s Kodiak launch site. We’re excited to have our first orbital attempt under our belt!

As we’ve always said, we expect it to take three flights to make it to orbit. Tonight, we saw a beautiful launch! Preliminary data review indicates the rocket performed very well. Early in the flight, our guidance system appears to have introduced some slight oscillation into the flight, causing the vehicle to drift from its planned trajectory leading to a commanded shutdown of the engines by the flight safety system. We didn’t meet all of our objectives, but we did gain valuable experience, plus even more valuable flight data. This launch sets us well on our way to reaching orbit within two additional flights, so we’re happy with the result.

We are incredibly proud of what the team accomplished today. This was our first orbital launch attempt, and the first flight of a rocket designed from the ground-up for low cost mass production and highly-automated launch operations. The entire launch system was deployed by six people in less than a week – completely unprecedented.

Astra’s strategy is to learn fast through iterative development. Although we’re pleased with today’s outcome, we still have more work to do to reach orbit. Once we reach orbit, we will relentlessly continue to improve the economics of the system as we deliver our customers’ payloads.

Over the next several weeks, we’ll be taking a close look at the flight data to determine how to make the next flight more successful. Rocket 3.2 is already built and ready for another big step towards orbit. Thank you to our incredible team and their families, all of our supporters, and stay tuned for updates over the next few weeks. We’ll be back to the pad before you know it!

Chris and Adam

https://astra.com/blog/we-have-lift-off/
« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 07:39 am by FutureSpaceTourist »

Offline snotis

Key bit:

Quote
Preliminary data review indicates the rocket performed very well. Early in the flight, our guidance system appears to have introduced some slight oscillation into the flight, causing the vehicle to drift from its planned trajectory leading to a commanded shutdown of the engines by the flight safety system.

Looks like they'll need to do some software tweaks to get things ready for next flight - no indications so far that it was a hardware problem.
« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 07:43 am by snotis »

Offline jamesh9000

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Here's a much closer video of the flight, showing much better details of the flight, well worth a watch (if it did terminate then they'd better work on the self-destruct systems BTW)

https://twitter.com/ThomasPRupp/status/1304686594411167745


This twitter post links to a video on facebook which is here:

https://www.facebook.com/ewvandongen/videos/10100980788269883/?extid=3k707T0fk6ZPlc1G&d=n


I'm including both depending on your social media preference.

Offline Rocketdog2116

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Here's a much closer video of the flight, showing much better details of the flight, well worth a watch (if it did terminate then they'd better work on the self-destruct systems BTW)

https://twitter.com/ThomasPRupp/status/1304686594411167745


This twitter post links to a video on facebook which is here:

https://www.facebook.com/ewvandongen/videos/10100980788269883/?extid=3k707T0fk6ZPlc1G&d=n


I'm including both depending on your social media preference.
Looks like everyone's first attempt at playing KSP before learning about SAS.

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Facebook video captures. Bits flew off soon after flameout, which was about 20 seconds after launch.

https://www.facebook.com/ewvandongen/videos/10100980788269883/
« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 09:38 am by Steven Pietrobon »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline Torlek

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Did it....start flipping right after shutdown? Certainly seemed to be in a flat spin on the way down.

Online Steven Pietrobon

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Did it....start flipping right after shutdown? Certainly seemed to be in a flat spin on the way down.

Yes, right after flameout it went sideways and ripped bits off the rocket, probably the nosecone.
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

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twitter.com/GeoffdBarrett/status/1304636125471019008

Reportedly sourced from Facebook.
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline Bananas_on_Mars

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Here's a much closer video of the flight, showing much better details of the flight, well worth a watch (if it did terminate then they'd better work on the self-destruct systems BTW)

https://twitter.com/ThomasPRupp/status/1304686594411167745


This twitter post links to a video on facebook which is here:

https://www.facebook.com/ewvandongen/videos/10100980788269883/?extid=3k707T0fk6ZPlc1G&d=n


I'm including both depending on your social media preference.

Not every rocket has explosive self-destruct.
Several of the small rocket companies are simply going with thrust termination. I think Rocketlab does it too. Virgin Orbit does.

And Astra is also using electric pumps on their engines. That should make reliable thrust termination quite easy.

Offline JamesH65

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Apparently this was not an orbital attempt:

twitter.com/planet4589/status/1304623025858453506

Quote
Failed to reach orbit; failed during first stage burn. This was @Astra's first orbital launch attempt - better luck next time.

https://twitter.com/wikkit/status/1304667330878865408

Quote
I'm old fashioned and think that to call something an orbital attempt it would need to be capable of making orbit.

The blog post specifically says it was an orbital launch attempt.

Offline ringsider

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Apparently this was not an orbital attempt:

twitter.com/planet4589/status/1304623025858453506

Quote
Failed to reach orbit; failed during first stage burn. This was @Astra's first orbital launch attempt - better luck next time.

https://twitter.com/wikkit/status/1304667330878865408

Quote
I'm old fashioned and think that to call something an orbital attempt it would need to be capable of making orbit.

The blog post specifically says it was an orbital launch attempt.
Brockert is not saying it was not an orbital attempt. He is saying something quite specific if I read it correctly.

Bear in mind he left/was pushed out of Astra a few weeks ago.
« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 01:36 pm by ringsider »

Offline Nomadd

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Not every rocket has explosive self-destruct.
Several of the small rocket companies are simply going with thrust termination. I think Rocketlab does it too. Virgin Orbit does.

And Astra is also using electric pumps on their engines. That should make reliable thrust termination quite easy.
Coming down on water is one thing. There's going to be some serious unhappiness about bombing Kodiak.
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Offline ZachS09

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Not every rocket has explosive self-destruct.
Several of the small rocket companies are simply going with thrust termination. I think Rocketlab does it too. Virgin Orbit does.

And Astra is also using electric pumps on their engines. That should make reliable thrust termination quite easy.
Coming down on water is one thing. There's going to be some serious unhappiness about bombing Kodiak.

But why? I can't understand them not implementing an FTS in the vehicle.
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Offline zubenelgenubi

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Wow. :(
Two orbital launch failures in one UTC day.
KZ-1A
and this.
« Last Edit: 09/13/2020 07:08 pm by zubenelgenubi »
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Not every rocket has explosive self-destruct.
Several of the small rocket companies are simply going with thrust termination. I think Rocketlab does it too. Virgin Orbit does.

And Astra is also using electric pumps on their engines. That should make reliable thrust termination quite easy.
Coming down on water is one thing. There's going to be some serious unhappiness about bombing Kodiak.

But why? I can't understand them not implementing an FTS in the vehicle.

https://kscsma.ksc.nasa.gov/RangeSafety/overview/fts

"- FTS must render each power stage and / or any other propulsion system, including any that are part of a payload, non-propulsive"

It doesn't need to blow up for it to be a FTS. I'm not sure how much more paperwork there is with the regulatory agencies for having ordinances on range, but I reckon there's probably a lot more and that it's easier to forgo ordinances and show thrust termination is the way to go. Like Bananas on Mars said, you just need to cut the power to the electric motors and then the engine isn't producing thrust anymore.

Offline ncb1397

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Basically, Pilot induced oscillations?

Quote
Pilot-induced oscillations, as defined by MIL-HDBK-1797A,[1] are sustained or uncontrollable oscillations resulting from efforts of the pilot to control the aircraft and occurs when the pilot of an aircraft inadvertently commands an often increasing series of corrections in opposite directions, each an attempt to cover the aircraft's reaction to the previous input with an over correction in the opposite direction. An aircraft in such a condition can appear to be "porpoising" switching between upward and downward directions. As such it is a coupling of the frequency of the pilot's inputs and the aircraft's own frequency. During flight test, pilot-induced oscillation is one of the handling qualities factors that is analyzed, with the aircraft being graded by an established scale (chart at right). In order to avoid any assumption that oscillation is necessarily the fault of the pilot, new terms have been suggested to replace pilot-induced oscillation. These include aircraft-pilot coupling, pilot–in-the-loop oscillations and pilot-assisted (or augmented) oscillations.[2]
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pilot-induced_oscillation

Basically, computer commands pitch one way, it goes too far, computer commands correction, that goes too far...etc. Small errors begin to accumulate.
« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 07:57 pm by ncb1397 »

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I know Space X had a lot of issues when they started out but you have got to think questions will start to be asked about Astra by now.

Offline Bananas_on_Mars

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Not every rocket has explosive self-destruct.
Several of the small rocket companies are simply going with thrust termination. I think Rocketlab does it too. Virgin Orbit does.

And Astra is also using electric pumps on their engines. That should make reliable thrust termination quite easy.
Coming down on water is one thing. There's going to be some serious unhappiness about bombing Kodiak.

But why? I can't understand them not implementing an FTS in the vehicle.

Thrust termination IS the flight termination system.

They‘ve done it 2 or 3 times already in Kodiak and the FAA seems to be ok with that.

Nothing happened to the bystanders. With an explosive self destruct at that height, something could have possibly fallen outside the restricted zone.

If the rocket as a whole is terminated, it should make it to the ground/water relatively intact on a predictable path.

And that vehicle, while it’s end looked spectacular, only carried 2-3 tons of rp-1. Most of it has burned off, so the spill is an order of magnitude less than what to expect from a wrecked road tanker.

Offline illectro

Here's a much closer video of the flight, showing much better details of the flight, well worth a watch (if it did terminate then they'd better work on the self-destruct systems BTW)

https://twitter.com/ThomasPRupp/status/1304686594411167745

I'm including both depending on your social media preference.

Neither video started at the instant of launch, but on this one, due to the sound delay you can hear the engines start at around 4 seconds and stop around 31 seconds - so about 25 seconds of powered flight (allowing a second or so for startup on the pad). So,

After shutdown the booster took about 40 seconds to hit the ground, the second stage landed about 9 seconds later.

If there were no atmospheric drag, this would suggest a peak velocity of about 150m/s, and peak altitude of about 1.8km.
But there was drag because we see the rocket break in two (unless that was FTS?)

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Offline ZachS09

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Not every rocket has explosive self-destruct.
Several of the small rocket companies are simply going with thrust termination. I think Rocketlab does it too. Virgin Orbit does.

And Astra is also using electric pumps on their engines. That should make reliable thrust termination quite easy.
Coming down on water is one thing. There's going to be some serious unhappiness about bombing Kodiak.

But why? I can't understand them not implementing an FTS in the vehicle.

Thrust termination IS the flight termination system.

They‘ve done it 2 or 3 times already in Kodiak and the FAA seems to be ok with that.

Nothing happened to the bystanders. With an explosive self destruct at that height, something could have possibly fallen outside the restricted zone.

If the rocket as a whole is terminated, it should make it to the ground/water relatively intact on a predictable path.

And that vehicle, while it’s end looked spectacular, only carried 2-3 tons of rp-1. Most of it has burned off, so the spill is an order of magnitude less than what to expect from a wrecked road tanker.

I’m sorry. I’m used to the FTS’s function being self-destruction rather than thrust termination.
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Offline snotis

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.

Offline Comga

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Did it....start flipping right after shutdown? Certainly seemed to be in a flat spin on the way down.

Yes, right after flameout it went sideways and ripped bits off the rocket, probably the nosecone.

Given the small, separate smoke plume to the left of the main impact my guess would be that what ripped off was the fueled second stage.
« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 07:19 pm by Comga »
What kind of wastrels would dump a perfectly good booster in the ocean after just one use?

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FB video in a tweet:

twitter.com/yoavoffek/status/1304758461629112320

Quote
After many delays @Astra finally launched their Rocket 3.1 from Kodiak Island, Alaska. Unfortunately the launch experienced an anomaly at around T+25s, and the rocket failed to get to space. The following video showcases the launch, the anomaly & the "crash landing".

https://twitter.com/yoavoffek/status/1304758740168642566

Quote
Credit: Eric Van Dongen
Original video: https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=10100980789697023&id=64200934

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https://twitter.com/astra/status/1304884123882807296

Quote
Volume up! Rocket 3.1's orbital launch attempt
« Last Edit: 09/12/2020 08:51 pm by FutureSpaceTourist »

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Offline TrevorMonty

Cleared pad and problem doesn't seem to be serious HW issue e.g exploding engine, so not bad outcome for first orbital attempt.

Offline ulm_atms

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I know Space X had a lot of issues when they started out but you have got to think questions will start to be asked about Astra by now.

Why?  Isn't this the first time they got it off the ground enough to see this type of issue?  If this is the first time actually flying...I can see this coming up.

Offline darkenfast

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Not the happiest thing to brag about, but I think they might have actually gotten higher than Falcon 1 first flight test!
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Offline trm14

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Why?  Isn't this the first time they got it off the ground enough to see this type of issue?  If this is the first time actually flying...I can see this coming up.

I'm not sure if if the fact that their earlier tests failed even earlier (the last time during launch preparations) counts as a plus.

Offline CJ

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After looking at the two vids that showed engine cutoff, to me it looks like the rocket trajectory was roughly towards the viewers. Especially in the facebook-posted-to-twitter one, posted a few posts up by FutureSpaceTourist, it sems quite clear to me that the trajectory is roughly toward the viewer (and the impact point much closer than the launch point).

The launch azimuth from Kodiak is supposed to be roughly south, as I recall. (the launch site sits at the southern end of a peninsula). Looks to me like the Astra rocket was heading roughly NW. This is quite a course deviation, if so. (Kodiak's site study claimed a launch azimuth range from 125 to 225 degrees.)

If the rocket was that far off course, looks like more than an oscillation issue to me. 

Offline ncb1397

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I know Space X had a lot of issues when they started out but you have got to think questions will start to be asked about Astra by now.

Why?  Isn't this the first time they got it off the ground enough to see this type of issue?  If this is the first time actually flying...I can see this coming up.

Supposedly, they flew a couple suborbital tests with dummy upper stages a while back. I wonder if weather played a role. It sounds like it was borderline on winds?
« Last Edit: 09/13/2020 05:05 pm by ncb1397 »

Offline FlattestEarth

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After looking at the two vids that showed engine cutoff, to me it looks like the rocket trajectory was roughly towards the viewers.

Not an expert, but to me it looked like it was going straight up,  just starting to pitch over, then shutdown, possibly pushed by the winds as it reached peak altitude and fell. Waiting for someone to post sat images of the impact site...

Offline QuantumG

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Bear in mind he left/was pushed out of Astra a few weeks ago.

Yeeerp.

Human spaceflight is basically just LARPing now.

Offline CJ

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After looking at the two vids that showed engine cutoff, to me it looks like the rocket trajectory was roughly towards the viewers.

Not an expert, but to me it looked like it was going straight up,  just starting to pitch over, then shutdown, possibly pushed by the winds as it reached peak altitude and fell. Waiting for someone to post sat images of the impact site...

If it was heading roughly south on a launch azimuth (the only approved azimuths being from SSE to SSW), I'd have expected the start of the grav turn to be well underway by the time the engine shutdown occurred, which would look like a trajectory lean to the right on the further of the two twitter videos.  However, maybe they are using a lofted trajectory for some reason. It's hard to tell whether it's going straight up, or angling toward the observers. The video commentary in the further of the two twitter vids mentions they think it's going right over their heads (though they could be mistaken).

Winds might be a factor (I hadn't thought of that, thanks!) but going by the clouds, I doubt there were strong winds in the area at the relevant altitudes. Could be, though.

My current guess; the crater will be seen NW of the old Loran C site (And thus roughly NW of the pad), and outside of the Kodiak Spaceport property, though not by a lot.   

I wish I knew for sure where those two twitter filmers were. Then, I could easily figure out a trajectory.

I'm certainly no expert, but *if* I'm right and the rocket was that much off course that it headed NW instead of SSE, and by that much, this wasn't any oscillation. It was a full blown major course deviation. 

Offline su27k

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Bear in mind he left/was pushed out of Astra a few weeks ago.

Yeeerp.

So what we learned? Because I'm still clueless about what he's trying to say...

Offline thirtyone

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Bear in mind he left/was pushed out of Astra a few weeks ago.

Yeeerp.

So what we learned? Because I'm still clueless about what he's trying to say...

I think previous posters are trying to say that this particular (tweeter?), Ben, actually worked inside Astra, and has some sense of what's going on inside. You can debate whether or not he's trustworthy after leaving, of course. If you follow his previous posts you can get an idea of his feelings about the company.

If he's to be believed, though, what Ben is implying (I think he actually alluded to this in his previous posts, as well) was that Astra may have not actually included a functional second stage in this launch, so there was no chance it'd go to orbit and it wasn't actually an orbital launch "attempt." No idea if that's because their second stage isn't done, or if they have production issues, etc.

One might argue that this is a good idea for a risky new rocket - make sure stage 1 works before wasting any more money on second stage hardware?
« Last Edit: 09/14/2020 04:27 am by thirtyone »

Offline jcm

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Bear in mind he left/was pushed out of Astra a few weeks ago.

Yeeerp.

So what we learned? Because I'm still clueless about what he's trying to say...

I think previous posters are trying to say that this particular (tweeter?), Ben, actually worked inside Astra, and has some sense of what's going on inside. You can debate whether or not he's trustworthy after leaving, of course. If you follow his previous posts you can get an idea of his feelings about the company.

If he's to be believed, though, what Ben is implying (I think he actually alluded to this in his previous posts, as well) was that Astra may have not actually included a functional second stage in this launch, so there was no chance it'd go to orbit and it wasn't actually an orbital launch "attempt." No idea if that's because their second stage isn't done, or if they have production issues, etc.

One might argue that this is a good idea for a risky new rocket - make sure stage 1 works before wasting any more money on second stage hardware?

Hmm, ok, I wasn't exactly sure if he meant that, or he just didn't believe that even a functional second stage in the current
design iteration had enough oomph to make it.
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Offline ringsider

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I wish I knew for sure where those two twitter filmers were. Then, I could easily figure out a trajectory.

The closer videographer has posted he was at the complex entrance, which gives us this:

[zubenelgenubi: Please attach images to post.  Do not embed them.]
« Last Edit: 09/18/2020 10:24 pm by zubenelgenubi »

Offline Skyrocket

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Bear in mind he left/was pushed out of Astra a few weeks ago.

Yeeerp.

So what we learned? Because I'm still clueless about what he's trying to say...

I think previous posters are trying to say that this particular (tweeter?), Ben, actually worked inside Astra, and has some sense of what's going on inside. You can debate whether or not he's trustworthy after leaving, of course. If you follow his previous posts you can get an idea of his feelings about the company.

If he's to be believed, though, what Ben is implying (I think he actually alluded to this in his previous posts, as well) was that Astra may have not actually included a functional second stage in this launch, so there was no chance it'd go to orbit and it wasn't actually an orbital launch "attempt." No idea if that's because their second stage isn't done, or if they have production issues, etc.

One might argue that this is a good idea for a risky new rocket - make sure stage 1 works before wasting any more money on second stage hardware?

Hmm, ok, I wasn't exactly sure if he meant that, or he just didn't believe that even a functional second stage in the current
design iteration had enough oomph to make it.

My impression was, that he thought, the current design has inherent unsolved issues. Perhaps we should simply ask him?

Offline CJ

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I wish I knew for sure where those two twitter filmers were. Then, I could easily figure out a trajectory.

The closer videographer has posted he was at the complex entrance, which gives us this:

Ringsider, thank you for this info, and the map and wind info!

The time from impact to shockwave arrival indicates about a mile, maybe a little less, which is a very close fit to where you have the impact points.

I tried to find those light polls (I thought they were antennas) and didn't - though now I do see them there in a sat view.

Looks like we have, thanks to your info, confirmation - Astra 3.1 was way off course. This is not the "slight oscillation" they claimed, or, they have a radically different definition of "slight". 

 I can't see any sign of a significant course change in the final seconds of powered flight, so I think the rocket was off course since leaving the pad, and did a range safety shutoff once its IP got close the the range's boundary line.

« Last Edit: 09/18/2020 10:24 pm by zubenelgenubi »

Offline Frogstar_Robot

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What puzzled me was the statement the problem was due to "roll oscillation". However, if the rocket pitched but did not roll correctly, then that might explain the course deviation.
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Offline ringsider

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The time from impact to shockwave arrival indicates about a mile, maybe a little less, which is a very close fit to where you have the impact points.

You are right, the sound data is useful as well:

[zubenelgenubi: Embedded image deleted and attached.]
« Last Edit: 09/18/2020 10:25 pm by zubenelgenubi »

Online FutureSpaceTourist

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Quote
Astra finally launches its first orbital rocket, and it flew for 30 seconds
“For us, what's expensive is not learning.”

ERIC BERGER - 9/14/2020, 1:22 PM

After months of technical and weather delays, Astra launched its first orbital rocket on Friday night from a spaceport in southern Alaska.

https://arstechnica.com/science/2020/09/astra-finally-launches-its-first-orbital-rocket-and-it-flew-for-30-seconds/

Offline Pueo

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I wish I knew for sure where those two twitter filmers were. Then, I could easily figure out a trajectory.

The closer videographer has posted he was at the complex entrance, which gives us this:

https://i.imgur.com/0TWGMZT.png
Ringsider, thank you for this info, and the map and wind info!

The time from impact to shockwave arrival indicates about a mile, maybe a little less, which is a very close fit to where you have the impact points.

I tried to find those light polls (I thought they were antennas) and didn't - though now I do see them there in a sat view.

Looks like we have, thanks to your info, confirmation - Astra 3.1 was way off course. This is not the "slight oscillation" they claimed, or, they have a radically different definition of "slight". 

 I can't see any sign of a significant course change in the final seconds of powered flight, so I think the rocket was off course since leaving the pad, and did a range safety shutoff once its IP got close the the range's boundary line.

In the video Astra posted the camera is aimed south-southeast, and there's a slight movement to the right of frame as would be expected from the planned trajectory.  Small rockets tend to fly comparatively lofted trajectories because they suffer more from drag (thanks square-cube law) and Rocket Lab's quite shallow pitch-over doesn't even begin until T+ 20 s, so a very slight movement in the frame is also expected.  Of course this doesn't tell us what we really want to know, the trajectory to the north west, but it does tell us that the trajectory wasn't so off as to overfly the Astra camera.

The vehicle also completely lost stability after the FTS cut the engines, and the first stage could easily have found itself significantly off course thanks to its unexpected new career as a lifting body.  The second stage crash site appears to the right of that of the first stage in the twitter video, and to its left in the facebook video, suggesting that the two actually landed rather far apart, which in turn implies a very non-ballistic trajectory.

Annoyingly the most recent Landsat-2 images of Kodiak Island were taken 5 hours prior to launch, so we can't even snoop on the burn scars yet.  >:(
« Last Edit: 09/15/2020 01:27 am by Pueo »
Could I interest you in some clean burning sub-cooled propalox and propalox accessories?
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Offline FlattestEarth

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Quote
Astra finally launches its first orbital rocket, and it flew for 30 seconds
“For us, what's expensive is not learning.”

ERIC BERGER - 9/14/2020, 1:22 PM

After months of technical and weather delays, Astra launched its first orbital rocket on Friday night from a spaceport in southern Alaska.

https://arstechnica.com/science/2020/09/astra-finally-launches-its-first-orbital-rocket-and-it-flew-for-30-seconds/

Quote
The first stage for Rocket 3.2 is similar to its predecessor, but the company has upgraded its second stage to give it a better chance of reaching orbit.

So maybe something to the claim that the second stage on this launch was not capable of achieving orbit.

Offline QuantumG

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You can debate whether or not he's trustworthy after leaving, of course.

One can always trust Ben to say precisely what he believes.
Human spaceflight is basically just LARPing now.

Offline harrystranger

Thanks to the help in this thread I was able to find the impact site using Sentinel-2 imagery in true colour and near infrared  :)
https://twitter.com/HarryStrangerPG/status/1305702391723905025?s
It can be really hard to interpret satellite imagery! Local knowledge & an understanding of an area’s history are crucial pieces of the puzzle.
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Offline Comga

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I wish I knew for sure where those two twitter filmers were. Then, I could easily figure out a trajectory.

The closer videographer has posted he was at the complex entrance, which gives us this:


Assume that the rocket went straight up.
Assume constant acceleration while the engines are burning.
Ignore air resistance.
Use the times from launch to engine cut-off and impact, and the previously derived altitude and velocity.
Can we estimate the turn angle the flight path would have had to make to impact at the distance from the launch site derived above?
Is that reasonable or can we conclude that the rocket was off course?
« Last Edit: 09/18/2020 10:26 pm by zubenelgenubi »
What kind of wastrels would dump a perfectly good booster in the ocean after just one use?

Offline russianhalo117

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I wish I knew for sure where those two twitter filmers were. Then, I could easily figure out a trajectory.

The closer videographer has posted he was at the complex entrance, which gives us this:


Assume that the rocket went straight up.
Assume constant acceleration while the engines are burning.
Ignore air resistance.
Use the times from launch to engine cut-off and impact, and the previously derived altitude and velocity.
Can we estimate the turn angle the flight path would have had to make to impact at the distance from the launch site derived above?
Is that reasonable or can we conclude that the rocket was off course?
Astra stated they cut the engines as it was heading off course and couldn't be recovered because of the guidance software issue. This implies that trajectory deviated in an arc and they terminated the flight to stay on the range and not land on the inhabited parts of Kodiak which it would have ended over. The wind was to weak to account for the deviation thus the guidance system and residual thrust and shutdown venting is fully responsible for the deviation to the impact site as winds were negligible in contributions.
« Last Edit: 09/18/2020 10:27 pm by zubenelgenubi »

Offline Comga

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Didn’t they say there was an instability/oscillation in the guidance, not wholesale misdirection?

The calculation remains doable.
What kind of wastrels would dump a perfectly good booster in the ocean after just one use?

Offline Celeste_El

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Topics a little old but better late than never. KMXT, a Kodiak radio station, reported on the crash and shared a good photo of the crash site.
https://kmxt.org/2020/09/rocket-crash-site-remediation-underway/

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