SpaceX Rocket Explosion Mystery Solved; A Reattempt Of Satellite Launch Using Falcon 9 Planned This Weekend

First Posted: Jan 04, 2017 02:35 AM EST

SpaceX announced that it is going to make another satellite launch attempt with the Falcon 9 rocket launcher, which exploded three months ago on the launch pad. The SpaceX rocket explosion that occurred in Cape Canaveral on Sep. 1, 2016 destroyed the $200 million Facebook satellite.

A detailed SpaceX rocket explosion report was released, which disclosed the possible cause of the explosion and the new satellite launch date. According to the SpaceX report, the "anomaly," i.e., explosion, occurred when the super-cold helium caused differential cooling of the carbon fibers and the aluminium on the second of the rocket's two stages, which made a gap between the two layers of the overwrap.

Liquid oxygen escaped and got trapped in the gap region and made the protective layers to buckle. The static between the layers ignited the trapped oxygen and caused its explosion, which led to a chain of explosions in the rocket, NBC News reported.

The SpaceX rocket explosion happened during an attempt to launch the AMOS-6 communications satellite. The satellite was a joint venture of Facebook and Eutelsat aimed to facilitate Internet access for the people living in remote areas of the world, which are considered underserved.

Elon Musk disclosed that SpaceX engineers have identified and solved the discrepancies in the configuration of the helium containers of the Falcon 9 rocket and optimized their temperature control mechanism in order to eliminate the possibilities of further complications and buckling of the overwrap layer, as noted by SpaceFlight Insider.

The next launch is scheduled to take place on Sunday, Jan. 8, 2017, from the Vandenberg Air Force Base, California. The success of forthcoming satellite launch will encompass deployment of 10 satellites meant for the upgrade and replacement of a few units of the Iridium Communications satellite constellation, which encompassed 66 satellites engaged in providing voice and data coverage across the globe.

Space explorers, NASA and even the general population are eagerly waiting for this satellite launch, which will decide the fate of the company following the infamous SpaceX rocket explosion in Cape Canaveral.

See Now: NASA's Juno Spacecraft's Rendezvous With Jupiter's Mammoth Cyclone

©2017 All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission. The window to the world of science news.

Join the Conversation

Real Time Analytics