Printer Friendly

GENERAL DYNAMICS NAMES LAUNCH INVESTIGATION TEAM

 SAN DIEGO, March 30 /PRNewswire/ -- General Dynamics Space Systems Division has formed an internal investigation team to analyze the major anomaly that occurred in the Atlas stage during the launch of the AC-74/UHF mission on March 25.
 The team will be headed by Bob DiNal, vice president of research and engineering, and Ben Wier, Atlas program director, of Space Systems Division. Their charter is to analyze the flight data and identify the root cause of the problem and the necessary corrective action to return the Atlas to flight. The team will be made up of senior officials from General Dynamics and Rocketdyne, which builds the MA-5 Atlas engine system.
 General Dynamics has committed to independent review of any flight anomalies. Retired Lt. Gen. Forrest McCartney, former director of Kennedy Space Center, will head up the Major Anomaly Review Board, consisting of senior industry officials.
 At 24 seconds into the flight of AC-74, the Atlas booster thrust started to decay to 65 percent of the nominal level. From then on, all systems tried to make up for the Atlas shortfall. Atlas booster cutoff was late, which reduced propellant available to the sustainer stage. In attempting to make up for the Atlas shortfall, the Centaur upper stage first burn was 24 seconds longer and the proper parking orbit was attained. The second Centaur burn, however, was 21 seconds shorter because of propellant depletion. As a result, the final orbit was approximately 3,000 nmi lower than contractually required.
 The Hughes HS601 satellite is healthy and in a stable orbit. However, because of the low orbit, Hughes engineers do not believe it is possible to boost it to its intended orbital location. They are performing analysis and reviewing orbital options.
 "While the AC-74/UHF mission is obviously a great disappointment to us at General Dynamics, we are gratified that the Centaur upper stage performed even beyond our expectation in attempting to make up for the booster shortfall," said Michael W. Wynne, General Dynamics Space Systems president. "This was important in proving the capability of our upper stage after the intensive investigation into the Centaur failure last year. A preliminary look at the data from AC-74 indicates that we have a problem with a much narrower focus than the previous Centaur failure. That could mean a far shorter launch standdown as we establish the corrective actions necessary to return Atlas to flight."
 This was the first problem in the Atlas stage since 1977.
 The impact to present schedules is not expected to be of a significant duration, but launch of the Atlas II presently on Complex 36 Pad A will await the resolution of this anomaly. It is also expected that because of the above-nominal Centaur performance, there will be no impact to the Titan IV/Centaur program.
 -0- 3/30/93
 /CONTACT: Julie C. Andrews of General Dynamics, 619-974-3600/
 (GD)


CO: General Dynamics ST: California IN: ARO SU:

MS-JB -- SD006 -- 1133 03/30/93 14:29 EST
COPYRIGHT 1993 PR Newswire Association LLC
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1993 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Mar 30, 1993
Words:495
Previous Article:MERIDIAN BANCORP AND BANKCARD HOLDERS OF AMERICA RELEASE WHITE PAPER ON DEBIT CARDS
Next Article:/C O R R E C T I O N: CALIFORNIA DEPARTMENT OF CONSERVATION/
Topics:


Related Articles
GENERAL DYNAMICS NAMES SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT FOR SPACE POLICY AND TECHNOLOGY
ATLAS I SUCCESSFULLY LAUNCHES GALAXY V SATELLITE
McPHERSON TO BE NAMED HEAD OF HUGHES, GD MISSILE TRANSITION TEAM
ATLAS LAUNCH FAILURE INVESTIGATION UNDER WAY
GENERAL DYNAMICS' FOURTH QUARTER, FULL-YEAR 1992 RESULTS
ATLAS READY TO LAUNCH UHF FI SATELLITE
GENERAL DYNAMICS ANNOUNCES FIRST QUARTER 1993 RESULTS: EARNINGS FROM CONTINUING OPERATIONS INCREASE 37 PERCENT
GENERAL DYNAMICS CONCLUDES LAUNCH INVESTIGATION
ATLAS READY TO LAUNCH UHF F2 SATELLITE
Boeing Convenes Investigation Board Following Failed Delta III Launch.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2017 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters