Times of the Internet RSS Feed - science - Science - 4 hours ago
NASA satellite crashes into ocean in failed launch
NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory failed to make it to orbit earlier today. It launched off from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California on a 4-stage Taurus XL rocket. The protective cover (a nose cone) failed to separate and, even though all the rocket stages worked, the extra weight meant that the satellite didn't reach orbit. It fell back to Earth and landed somewhere in the ocean near Antarctica.
The failure of the $278 million mission is a setback for carbon monitoring efforts from space. It is also the second of eight Taurus XL missions to fail. Orbital Sciences Corporation built both the satellite and the rocket.
NASA says it will convene a committee to investigate the failure.