March 4, 2024

Taylor Daily Press

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Astra launch failure led to the loss of two NASA weather satellites

A rocket from space startup Astra failed to launch two of NASA’s weather satellites into space after a second-stage engine prematurely shut down. Both satellites were lost due to outages.

The Astra 0010 (LV0010) launch vehicle successfully took off from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida at 1:43 p.m. ET, but suffered a failure on the upper stage about 10 minutes into the flight. The launch was part of NASA’s mission to send six TROPICS satellites into space These tiny satellites, about 12 inches (30 centimeters) across, should help NASA better track the evolution of tropical storms. CubeSats are inexpensive satellites made by researchers at colleges and universities.

“The upper stage closed early and we didn’t put any payloads into orbit,” Astra said. Twitter statement† “We have shared our regrets with NASA and the payload team.” Thomas Zurbuchen, associate director of NASA’s science division, acknowledged the launch failure Twitter themeBut he remained optimistic, noting that it still “presents a great opportunity for new science and launch opportunities.”

It is unclear if NASA plans to launch the remaining TROPICS satellites with Astra or when they will be replaced. NASA did not immediately respond the edgeComment request.

Astra partnered with NASA for the first time in February to launch a series of CubeSats into space, marking its first launch from Cape Canaveral. but, Astra lost its cargo after the missile got out of control after launch.

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To date, Astra has had only two successful orbital launches out of a total of seven attempts – the The company first reached orbit last November and the The customer’s satellites were successfully launched into orbit in March† A range of issues affected other Astra launches, starting with: Steering system problems to me Engine failure