SpaceX is likely to be the first leg of Falcon's Rocket 9 launched on April 30 with a drone ship just off the coast of Cape Canaveral, unlike the company's onshore recovery facility, as originally scheduled after a ground test of the company's Dragon Capsule at the landing site ended in a blast on Saturday
Workers examined wrecks of the Crew's Dragon spacecraft at Landing Zone 1, the site where Falcon 9 boosters return to Cape Canaveral, and asked the company to apply for approval from the Federal Communications Commission, the first stage of next week's mission to land on the SpaceX drone ship in the Atlantic. SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket with a brand new first stage will launch at 4.22 am EDT (0822 GMT) on April 30 from Cape Canaveral Complex 40 launch pad. The launcher will launch a dragon capsule with several tons of material and experiments into orbit.
Industry officials confirmed on Tuesday that SpaceX is likely to try a drone ship on "Next Week's Mission" to "Ensure Integrity" of the landing zone 1 area and "preserve valuable information" after the Saturday disaster at Crew Dragon.
According to a Monday SpaceX license application, the drone ship will be positioned about 28 kilometers southeast of Padden 40 or east of the easternmost point of Cape Canaveral. In fine weather, the return of the rocket to Earth should be visible from Earth.
The landing will allow SpaceX to renovate and fly the booster for a future mission. Falcon 9 launches Dragon Cargo Freighters with sufficient first-stage fuel reserves to reverse the course and return to Cape Canaveral instead of landing on the SpaceX drone ship.
NASA spokesman said on Monday that the Dragon cargo mission is scheduled to start on April 30th. It will be the station's 17th space-space supply mission, which since 2012 has a NASA contract worth more than $ 3 billion.
On Thursday, the Merlin main engines from Falcon 9 to Pad 40 are to be held down.
SpaceX and NASA representatives will assess probable impact on resupply missions in the coming days. From the Crew Dragon test accident investigation.
The Crew Dragon spacecraft, also called Dragon 2, differs significantly from SpaceX's first generation of Dragon capsules.
The accident on Saturday occurred during a hot-fire test of the crew According to SpaceX and NASA officials, SuperDraco throttles off. The SuperDraco engines, which would be activated to rescue astronauts from a failed rocket, will not fly with the Dragon variant, which will be ready to launch next week.
The spacecraft that exploded on Saturday was the same vehicle that made a six-test flight to the International Space Station last month. SpaceX conducted a capsule floor test to prepare for reuse during a demolition demonstration during the flight over the next few months. This test is designed to ensure that the SuperDraco engines can safely keep the spacecraft from a Falcon 9 rocket under extreme aerodynamic pressures.
SpaceX and NASA have said little about Saturday's crash, but the disaster is expected to delay the Crew Dragon program by months. The in-flight departure test must use another test vehicle, which was planned to be one of the last milestones before NASA authorized the spacecraft to transport astronauts to the space station.
With the demo-1 capsule No For the crash during the flight SpaceX is longer available and has to remix its plans and equip another vehicle for the flight test at high altitude.
The unpiloted Crew Dragon flight to the space station in early March, called Demo-1, reached all key targets, including the first automated docking of a US spacecraft to the station. However, NASA officials said at the time that engineers would need to conduct further tests and analysis of the Dragon's engines and parachutes, as well as the spacecraft's missile and the Falcon 9 rocket, before finding the crew capsule ready.
NASA astronaut Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley are assigned to the first piloted mission by Crew Dragon called Demo-2.
The most recent schedule stated that the launch of Demo 2 was not scheduled until July 25, Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Officials familiar with the schedule said before Saturday's disaster that the demo 2 mission was likely to be pushed back by late September or early October.
The Crew Dragon is one of two commercial spaceships funded by NASA to bring astronauts to and from the airport space station.
SpaceX has won a series of NASA's total value of more than $ 3.1 billion since 2010 for the development of its human-rated Crew Dragon spacecraft. The contracts for the crew are separate from SpaceX's multi-million dollar freight deal with NASA.
Boeing received a similar set of orders worth more than $ 4.8 billion to support the design and development of the Starliner CST-100 spacecraft.
Crew Dragon is to launch Falkey 9 of Pad 39A at Kennedy aboard the SpaceX rocket while the Starliner capsule will take off with the Atlas 5 rocket from United Launch Alliance from nearby Pad 41 of the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. Both are designed to accommodate up to seven crew members, but will typically carry four astronauts and cargo at the same time.
The crew capsule of SpaceX returns to Earth with a parachute jump at sea under four parachutes. Steamed with airbags, the Starliner lands in the western United States under landslides.
Both vehicles use fluid-filled "pusher" escape systems to accelerate the capsules quickly before a launch emergency. Other crew capsules such as Russia's Soyuz, NASA's 1960s Apollo, and future Orion spacecraft use a "tractor" breakaway system that relies on towers with solid fuel rocket motors to pull the vehicle away from the launcher.
Once the rocket has left the atmosphere, the abort towers are dropped because they are no longer needed. Crew Dragon's SuperDraco engines, originally developed by SpaceX to support propulsion-specific touchdowns, remain with the spacecraft from takeoff to landing.
SpaceX dropped the 2017 approach and decided to bring crewed Dragon capsules with more ground to the Earth on conventional oceanic landings.
The Throat Nozzles of the Crew Dragon use Hygergolic hydrazine and nitrogen tetroxide propellants, which ignite chemically when mixed. The ship's Draco engines are used for maneuvering in orbit and for pointing, while eight larger SuperDraco engines – packaged in pairs in four propulsion modules – are used for launch aborts.
Each SuperDraco engine has a 3D printed chamber at 16,000 pounds of thrust, with the ability to reboot several times.
Boeing also got into trouble during the demolition test.
A hotfire of Starliner demolition engines last year resulted in stuck valves in the ship's propulsion system. A fuel leaked at a test facility in New Mexico.
Each CST-100 service module has four Aerojet Rocketdyne start-abort engines. The engines would only fire in flight in the event of a launch emergency and ignite with 40,000 pounds of thrust for a few seconds to push the capsule away from its missile.
Like the Crew Dragon SuperDraco engines, the Starliner's engines burn off a mixture of toxic hydrazine and nitrogen tetroxide propellants that rise to full throttle almost instantly and fire for just a few seconds. The requirement requires the demolition engines to dump huge amounts of propellant under high pressure into the engines.
Boeing officials said the fuel leak did not damage the test article, but the mishap forced the engineers to make minor design changes to a portion of the system. Starliner's propulsion system, including hardware and software modifications.
Earlier this month, Boeing said new valves were installed into the Starliner kill engines for another Hotfire test, followed by a pad break test to demonstrate the system's ability to safely push the capsule away from danger the launch pad.
SpaceX successfully completed the Pad Abort Test in May 2015 with a Boilerplate version of Crew Dragon. When the agency negotiated the commercial missions, NASA did not require any company to complete a demonstration during the crash during the flight, and Boeing decided to forego such a test.
Boeing now plans the first Orbitaltest of Starliner without astronauts In the middle of August followed in November the first test flight of the capsule with astronauts. Both demo missions will dock with the space station.
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