Blue Origin ‘abnormal’ results in capsule abort

An “anomaly” forced an in-flight capsule abort Monday during a Blue Origin flight from West Texas. The New Shepard rocket, now grounded by the Federal Aviation Administration, was not carrying people. It’s an earlier version of one that’s launched six times with people onboard. One minute and four seconds into its 10-minute mission is when the booster of the Blue Origin NS-23 failed. Just after an irregular jet of flame streaked from the engine, the abort system kicked in and rocketed the capsule away from the failing main stage.“If you go back and play it very slowly, you see that there are some flashes. Normally, when you have those flashes, it means that there is some type of debris or some extra fuel or something happening,” said Paula do Vale Pereira of Florida Tech. But the company said the escape system performed as designed. A solid rocket motor essentially at the base of this capsule fired right when it needed to. And the capsule got away from the rocket that was in the process of exploding,” Eric Berger with Ars Technica said. While there were no humans in the capsule, there were 36 payloads of science experiments, half funded by NASA. “If people were on board, they would have gotten a big kick in the pants and felt some Gs, but they would have been just fine,” Berger said. There are three more passenger New Shepard missions planned for this year. “Despite these companies trying to move toward airline-like operations, I think there’s still a long ways to go,” Berger said. As a result of Monday’s aborted mission, the FAA has grounded the New Shepard. The agency wrote the following in a statement to WESH 2 News: “ Before the New Shepard vehicle can return to flight, the FAA will determine whether any system, process, or procedure related to the mishap affected public safety.” This is standard practice for all mishap investigations. Mission NS-23 was delayed three times because of the weather. The failed booster is an earlier version than the one rated for missions with people onboard.The capsule drifted back down to earth under three parachutes, just like how it would have come down even if everything went as planned.”Given their history of regular and reliable flights, I’m pretty sure they can figure it out without major issues,” said Julie Brisset with UCF’s Florida Space Institute. See the moment the flight was aborted below

An “anomaly” forced an in-flight capsule abort Monday during a Blue Origin flight from West Texas.

The New Shepard rocket, now grounded by the Federal Aviation Administration, was not carrying people. It’s an earlier version of one that’s launched six times with people onboard.

One minute and four seconds into its 10-minute mission is when the booster of the Blue Origin NS-23 failed.

Just after an irregular jet of flame streaked from the engine, the abort system kicked in and rocketed the capsule away from the failing main stage.

“If you go back and play it very slowly, you see that there are some flashes. Normally, when you have those flashes, it means that there is some type of debris or some extra fuel or something happening,” said Paula do Vale Pereira of Florida Tech.

But the company said the escape system performed as designed.

“It’s launch escape system. A solid rocket motor essentially at the base of this capsule fired right when it needed to. And the capsule got away from the rocket that was in the process of exploding,” Eric Berger with Ars Technica said.

While there were no humans in the capsule, there were 36 payloads of science experiments, half funded by NASA.

“If people were on board, they would have gotten a big kick in the pants and felt some Gs, but they would have been just fine,” Berger said.

There are three more passenger New Shepard missions planned for this year.

“Despite these companies trying to move toward airline-like operations, I think there’s still a long ways to go,” Berger said.

As a result of Monday’s aborted mission, the FAA has grounded the New Shepard.

The agency wrote the following in a statement to WESH 2 News: “Before the New Shepard vehicle can return to flight, the FAA will determine whether any system, process, or procedure related to the mishap affected public safety.”

This is standard practice for all mishap investigations.

Mission NS-23 was delayed three times because of the weather. The failed booster is an earlier version than the one rated for missions with people onboard.

The capsule drifted back down to earth under three parachutes, just like how it would have come down even if everything went as planned.

“Given their history of regular and reliable flights, I’m pretty sure they can figure it out without major issues,” said Julie Brisset with UCF’s Florida Space Institute.

See the moment the flight was aborted below

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