Second Nasa climate-change satellite lauch failure in two years

NASA: Rocket probably in ocean after failed launch
Declines to release the full accident report, citing sensitive and proprietary information.
Rat is smelled over the suspicious nature of launch failures, secrecy.
By JESSICA GRESKO Mar 4, 8:46 AM EST
WASHINGTON (AP) -- A rocket carrying an Earth-observation satellite is in the Pacific Ocean after a failed launch attempt, NASA officials said Friday.
The Taurus XL rocket carrying NASA's Glory satellite lifted off around 2:10 a.m. PST from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.
During a news conference Friday officials explained that a protective shell or fairing atop the rocket did not separate from the satellite as it should have about three minutes after the launch. That left the Glory spacecraft without the velocity to reach orbit.
NASA suffered a similar mishap two years ago when a satellite that would have studied global warming crashed into the ocean near Antarctica after launching from the same kind of rocket that carried Glory. Officials said Friday that Glory likely wound up landing near where the previous satellite did.
"We failed to make orbit," NASA launch director Omar Baez said Friday. "Indications are that the satellite and rocket ... is in the southern Pacific Ocean somewhere."
Had Glory reached orbit it would have been on a three-year mission to analyze how airborne particles affect Earth's climate. Besides monitoring particles in the atmosphere, it would also have tracked solar radiation to determine the sun's effect on climate change.
Glory was supposed to study tiny atmospheric particles known as aerosols, which reflect and trap sunlight. The vast majority occurs naturally, spewed into the atmosphere by volcanoes, forest fires and desert storms. Aerosols can also come from manmade sources such as the burning of fossil fuel.
The $424 million mission is managed by the NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland.
Friday's launch came after engineers spent more than a week troubleshooting a glitch that led to a last-minute scrub and two years studying what went wrong with the 2009 mission that also crashed.
An accident board was formed to investigate and corrective action was taken to prevent future problems. A duplicate is now scheduled to fly from Vandenberg in 2013.
Investigators spent several months testing hardware, interviewing engineers and reviewing data and documents. The probe did not find evidence of widespread testing negligence or management shortcomings, but NASA declined to release the full accident report, citing sensitive and proprietary information.
2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. (yea? Well fuck you)
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responding to http://www.homeownershub.com/maintenance/Second-Nasa-climate-change-satellite-lauch-failure-in-two-ye-624135-.htm DA wrote: Home Guy wrote:

There is no incident report: it's only been 6 hours since the launch. Also, both the rocket and the satellite were manufactured by a private contractor, Orbital Sciences Corporation ( http://www.orbital.com/ ) who, together with NASA, will produce such report in due time.
There is an executive summary of the previous 2009 failure investigation available online at http://www.nasa.gov/pdf/369037main_OCOexecutivesummary_71609.pdf It is not a full report because (from NASA): \"The official report of the board contains information restricted by U.S. International Traffic in Arms Regulations and company-sensitive proprietary information.\"
Sounds reasonable to me. The more private businesses get involved in space exploration, the more \"secrecy\" you'll see - no one wants to divulge \"company-sensitive proprietary information\" unless required by law. Especially now that Orbital finally has a competitor - Space X ( http://www.spacex.com/ )

Not really, they convened a press-conference and indicated their preliminary findings. This from NASA:
\"At a news conference following the unsuccessful attempt to place the Glory spacecraft in orbit, a team from NASA and Orbital Sciences Corporation, maker of the Taurus XL rocket, discussed the failure of the rocket's fairing to separate. The fairing, which covers and protects the spacecraft during launch and ascent, underwent a redesign of its separation system after a similar failure two years ago. The new system has been successfully used on another Orbital launch vehicle several times.\"
Here is NASA TV coverage of the press-conference: http://tinyurl.com/4dol9dx
In any case, so it was a climate-related mission. Mars missions until very recently have also been riddled with failures, what do you make of that?
Interestingly, Orbital Sciences Corporation has a contract for the second Orbiting Carbon Observatory mission, OCO-2 to be launched in February 2013. It's the same rocket. If it fails to separate once again, we should be ready for conspiracy theorists to come up with yet another angle: \"Corporate America doesn't want the truth about climate change to be known!\". It will be fun to watch that one play out!
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On 3/4/2011 7:59 AM, Home Guy wrote:

The cause of the failure of the mission was determined to be "climate change". It prompted all the framistans to lose sync and fall out of alignment which forced all of the command signals to introvert. :-(
TDD
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