Mars 'flying saucer' splashes back down after test

Mars 'flying saucer' splashes back down after test

Posted: Updated:

Update:

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- A saucer-shaped vehicle launched by balloon high into Earth's atmosphere has splashed down in the Pacific Ocean, completing a successful test of technology that could be used to land on Mars.

The $150 million experimental flight Saturday tested a novel vehicle and a giant parachute designed to deliver heavier spacecraft and eventually astronauts.

The parachute did not fully deploy but NASA still deemed the mission a success.

After taking off from the Pacific Missile Range Facility on Hawaii, the balloon boosted the disc-shaped vehicle over the ocean. Its rocket motor carried the vehicle to 34 miles high, where the environment was similar to the thin Martian atmosphere.

As the vehicle dropped back to Earth, a tube around it expanded like a Hawaiian puffer fish, creating atmospheric drag to dramatically slow it down.


NASA launches Mars 'flying saucer' vehicle, parachute in Earth's atmosphere

LOS ANGELES - A high-altitude balloon carrying a saucer-shaped vehicle for NASA has taken off from a Hawaii island to test technology that could be used on Mars.

Since the twin Viking spacecraft landed on the red planet in 1976, NASA has relied on the same parachute design to slow landers and rovers after entering the thin Martian atmosphere.

Saturday's experimental flight high in Earth's atmosphere is testing a brand-new vehicle and giant parachute designed to deliver heavier spacecraft and eventually astronauts.High winds at the Kauai military range forced NASA to miss its original two-week launch window in June.

Engineers will analyze the data to determine if the "flying saucer" test was successful. NASA will conduct more tests next year before deciding whether to fly the parachute on a future Mars mission.

(The Associated Press) (from Broadcast News Ltd.)

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.




  • Top StoriesMore>>

  • Clinic veterans call a "life-saver" in danger of closing by end of the week

    Clinic veterans call a "life-saver" in danger of closing by end of the week

    Thursday, July 24 2014 11:20 PM EDT2014-07-25 03:20:27 GMT
    FOX 25 highlighted the Patriot Clinic in S. Oklahoma City in our military town hall meeting in May. Patients of all kinds go there to get a prescription to use hyperbaric oxygen treatment for a number of illnesses and injuries. 
    FOX 25 highlighted the Patriot Clinic in S. Oklahoma City in our military town hall meeting in May. Patients of all kinds go there to get a prescription to use hyperbaric oxygen treatment for a number of illnesses and injuries. 
  • "Botched" execution in Arizona familiar issue in Oklahoma

    "Botched" execution in Arizona familiar issue in Oklahoma

    Thursday, July 24 2014 10:42 PM EDT2014-07-25 02:42:11 GMT
    An all too familiar case is raising more questions about death penalty procedures Oklahoma and across the country.The Arizona Department of Corrections said Thursday Joseph Wood's execution was not botched. Officials say Wood was comatose during the two hour ordeal Wednesday. They say noises witnesses described as gasping and struggling for breath, was actually Wood snoring.Witnesses said something was clearly wrong.Related: Controversy brews over drawn out execution in Arizona"It was tough f...
    An all too familiar case is raising more questions about death penalty procedures Oklahoma and across the country.The Arizona Department of Corrections said Thursday Joseph Wood's execution was not botched. Officials say Wood was comatose during the two hour ordeal Wednesday. They say noises witnesses described as gasping and struggling for breath, was actually Wood snoring.Witnesses said something was clearly wrong.Related: Controversy brews over drawn out execution in Arizona"It was tough f...
  • Teachers begin preparing classrooms for new standards

    Teachers begin preparing classrooms for new standards

    Thursday, July 24 2014 10:35 PM EDT2014-07-25 02:35:16 GMT
    Across Oklahoma classrooms, new standards are on the way. As teachers throw out old plans, there are question about what teachers should get ready for in the coming days.State superintendent Janet Barresi says at least a portion is up to your local district."The real curriculum that is how they are taught, is determined by the teacher in their classroom or by the school," Barresi said.Barresi says the state standards will transition off common core starting this year and teach the PASS standa...
    Across Oklahoma classrooms, new standards are on the way. As teachers throw out old plans, there are question about what teachers should get ready for in the coming days.State superintendent Janet Barresi says at least a portion is up to your local district."The real curriculum that is how they are taught, is determined by the teacher in their classroom or by the school," Barresi said.Barresi says the state standards will transition off common core starting this year and teach the PASS standa...
  • More HeadlinesMore>>

  • Gallup survey: majority of Americans opposed to lowering drinking age

    Gallup survey: majority of Americans opposed to lowering drinking age

    Thursday, July 24 2014 6:40 PM EDT2014-07-24 22:40:36 GMT
    When it comes to the drinking age, the vast majority of Americans don't want to go back to the future.
    When it comes to the drinking age, the vast majority of Americans don't want to go back to the future.
  • Maine prepares for new work requirement people who receive food stamps

    Maine prepares for new work requirement people who receive food stamps

    Thursday, July 24 2014 4:00 PM EDT2014-07-24 20:00:42 GMT
    It's a federal law that hasn't been enforced in Maine since the recession. But Governor LePage and the Department of Health and Human Services will soon start enforcing work requirement for able-bodied adults who collectively get $15-million dollars a year in food stamps. More than 200,000 people in Maine currently receive food stamps to help feed themselves or their families.
    It's a federal law that hasn't been enforced in Maine since the recession. But Governor LePage and the Department of Health and Human Services will soon start enforcing work requirement for able-bodied adults who collectively get $15-million dollars a year in food stamps. More than 200,000 people in Maine currently receive food stamps to help feed themselves or their families.
  • 116 passengers and crew missing in Air Algerie flight

    116 passengers and crew missing in Air Algerie flight

    Thursday, July 24 2014 11:28 AM EDT2014-07-24 15:28:48 GMT
    ALGIERS, Algeria (AP) -- Authorities say a flight operated by Air Algerie carrying 110 passengers and a crew of six has disappeared from the radar on a flight from Burkina Faso to Algiers.
    ALGIERS, Algeria (AP) -- Authorities say a flight operated by Air Algerie carrying 110 passengers and a crew of six has disappeared from the radar on a flight from Burkina Faso to Algiers.
ADVERTISEMENT
Bookmark and Share
  • FOX25 Slideshows

Most Popular

Stories
Videos
Compiling list...
  • FOX 25 FeaturesMore>>

  • Tell Me Something Good

    Tell Me Something Good

    Tired of all the bad news? Looking for some good news? Tell Me Something Good, does just that! FOX 25's Mike Brooks finds the good in Oklahoma and tells you all about it.
    Tired of all the bad news? Looking for some good news? Tell Me Something Good, does just that! FOX 25's Mike Brooks finds the good in Oklahoma and tells you all about it.
  • Waste Watch

    Waste Watch

    How are your tax dollars being spent? FOX 25 Waste Watch tracks whether local, state and federal governments, or any groups, are using your money wisely... or wasting it.
    How are your tax dollars being spent? FOX 25 Waste Watch tracks whether local, state and federal governments, or any groups, are using your money wisely... or wasting it.
Powered by WorldNow
Powered by 

WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KOKH. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.