Did One of Falcon 9′s Engines Explode? Video Shows Debris at Parabolic Arc

Engine 1 seems to have suffered a “rapid unscheduled dis-assembly” — i.e., it blew up. The other 8 engines burned longer than planned to put Dragon into orbit. The anomaly occurred at 1 minute and 20 seconds into the flight.

via Did One of Falcon 9′s Engines Explode? Video Shows Debris at Parabolic Arc.

I had to link this for the “rapid unscheduled dis-assembly” bit alone. This happened at close to max Q, or maximum dynamic pressure, though the call of max Q was six seconds after the engine explosion. The D version of the Merlin 1 engine addresses this problem by adding throttle capability from 70% to 100%. The vacuum version of the Merlin 1C already has throttle capability.

This makes me glad for robust designs.

Zoomed in and slowed down view of the engine destruction at the link, normal launch video here:

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tRTYh71D9P0&w=560&h=315]

So does this count as ‘splodey?

3 thoughts on “Did One of Falcon 9′s Engines Explode? Video Shows Debris at Parabolic Arc”

  1. Certainly not! Splodey must be accompanied by loud noises, lots of dirt, and plenty of Soldiers or Marines in the background using copious quantities of what we used to call “Army Creole.” If it is aimed at ragheads trying to harm to our boys, that’s extra credit.

    Hope this helps aid future efforts at feeding our addictions.

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