Oct 27, 2016 12:22 PM EDT
Has The Cause Of SpaceX Falcon 9 Rocket's Blast Finally Been Found?
SpaceX is still continuing the investigation on the explosion of its Falcon 9 rocket. All angles were examined - even sabotage implications.
There were speculations by Elon Musk and his company that its rival, the United Launch Alliance (ULA), may have something to do with the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket blast last September. Apparently, something suspicious happened during the launch and the company's officials wanted to check it out. A SpaceX employee was denied access to ULA's building, though.
This time, Wired reported that the investigation is currently being focused on the cryogenic helium system inside SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket's second stage liquid oxygen tank. It was noted that this was the fuel that would have been used to help the rocket's cargo, which is an Amos-6 communications satellite, to move from Low Earth Orbit into Geostationary Transfer Orbit.
"It could be good if it turns out to be an operational problem, because that is easily remedied, rather than a design or manufacturing problem," Scott Pace, director of the Space Policy Institute at George Washington University, said. "But you have to ask why did that operation failure happen. Was [it] their lack of training or understanding of what was going on?"
Pace noted that he would like to know whether it truly was only the fueling failure that caused SpaceX Falcon 9's rocket to explode or whether there were other reasons. "Was it that people felt rushed?" he added. "Was there schedule pressure, were they doing something innovative. Was it something else?"
According to Inverse, SpaceX has neither confirmed nor denied the reports yet. Elon Musk and his company are still waiting for the investigation to be completed with the final conclusions before announcing the details to the public.
The publication also noted that an operational error would be fortunate for SpaceX since any hardware flaw would require them to overhaul the rocket's design. This would also push back their operations for several more months delaying their schedule for their return to flight in November and, ultimately, affecting their Mars plans.
Join the Conversation