Feeds

NASA flying saucer vids show fire in the sky

Mighty thruster lifts Mars payload delivery tech

Business security measures using SSL

NASA has released some entertaining short video clips from last Saturday's test of the Low Density Supersonic Decelerator (LDSD), showing how the future Mars payload delivery tech flight featured a mighty thruster, some hot airbag action and a while lot of a-whoopin' and a-hollerin'.

The LDSD launched below an enormous helium-filled orb from the US Navy's Pacific Missile Range Facility, on the Hawaiian island of Kauai.

At 36,500m, it dropped free from the balloon, and was blasted to 55,000m and Mach 4 by a ATK Star 48B solid fuel thruster.

Once the motor had done its job, the "Supersonic Inflatable Aerodynamic Decelerator" (SIAD) airbags popped out to slow the vehicle to modest Mach 2.5...

...after which the "Supersonic Disk Sail Parachute" out in a less than fully-deployed appearance:

Despite this glitch, NASA noted since that the SIAD and 'chute were "bonus" elements of a mission principally intended to test the LDSD, the ballocket flight was a success.

The ultimate aim of the LDSD to try out technologies allowing heavier payloads - up from the "current capability of 1.5 metric tons to 2 to 3 metric tons" - to be safely delivered to the surface of Mars. NASA has two further flights scheduled for next year. ®

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
PORTAL TO ELSEWHERE scried in small galaxy far, far away
Supermassive black hole dominates titchy star formation
Boffins say they've got Lithium batteries the wrong way around
Surprises at the nano-scale mean our ideas about how they charge could be all wrong
Bacon-related medical breakthrough wins Ig Nobel prize
Is there ANYTHING cured pork can't do?
Edge Research Lab to tackle chilly LOHAN's final test flight
Our US allies to probe potential Vulture 2 servo freeze
Europe prepares to INVADE comet: Rosetta landing site chosen
No word yet on whether backup site is labelled 'K'
Cracked it - Vulture 2 power podule fires servos for 4 HOURS
Pixhawk avionics juice issue sorted, onwards to Spaceport America
'Duck face' selfie in SPAAAACE: Rosetta's snap with bird comet
Probe prepares to make first landing on fast-moving rock
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.