Thursday, November 13, 2008

Segments of Ares I-X for 2009 Test Flight

Below are some photos of the segments for the Ares I-X rocket to be used in a test flight targeted for July 2009.

The upper stage segments will simulate the mass and the outer mold line and will be more than 100 feet of the total vehicle height of 327 feet. The simulator comprises 11 segments that are approximately 18 feet in diameter. Most of the segments will be approximately 10 feet high, ranging in weight from 18,000 to 60,000 pounds, for a total of approximately 450,000 pounds.

The bottom two photos are of first-stage segment (forward skirt). The segment is fabricated entirely of armored steel, weighs 14,000 pounds, and is 7 feet tall and 12.25 feet wide.


Christopher Lusardi said...

In one of NASA's news conferences from years ago, Steve Squyres and his team determined that water had existed on Mars. Steve held a sample of the mineral jarosite and made that declaration based on this mineral.

"We interpret this sulfur to be really the compound sulfate," said Ben Clark, a MER science team member. "And the salt that we think is probably most prevalent is magnesium sulfate." Magnesium sulfate can be found at your local drug store: it's what Epsom salt is made of. The mineral present on Mars is most likely kieserite, a dehydrated form of the compound.

Opportunity's Mössbauer spectrometer confirmed the presence of sulfates when it detected the mineral jarosite. Jarosite is an iron sulfate hydrate; it forms through the interaction of iron, sulfur and water. "Because it's a sulfate hydrate," Squyres said, "you've got to have water around to make it." Although it is rare on Earth, some scientists had predicted that it might be found on Mars.

I own (relatively inexpensive) 5 samples of jarosite through EBay etc. Steve's team also talked about the mineral kieserite found on Mars. Kieserite is hard to purchase in rock form on Earth.

David said...

Given this is the ride you and I will get to train for, I'm sure this assembly is pretty exciting for you! They have a mock-up of the Orion capsule at Huntsville, and I could feel my heart race just standing underneath and looking up into it! Any word yet on ideas for dealing with the vibration issues, or is everyone pretty much waiting for I-X to fly?

sidd said...

wow..the ares I-X sure is huge...oh by the way..WE INDIANS MADE IT TO THE MOON!!