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Thursday, May 15, 2014

NASA Has Built A Flying Saucer

"NASA workers at the agency's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, wearing clean room 'bunny suits,' prepare the Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator (LDSD) test article for shipment later this month to Hawaii. LDSD will help land bigger space payloads on Mars or return them back to Earth."
Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltec 
.... click photo for a larger image

Click  _here_ for the JPL website page.

"NASA's LDSD test is designed to investigate breakthrough technologies that will benefit landing future human and robotic Mars missions, as well as aid in safely returning large payloads to Earth. The NASA LDSD test over the Pacific Ocean will simulate the entry, descent and landing speeds a spacecraft would be exposed to when flying through the Martian atmosphere. During the test, a large saucer-shaped disk carrying an inflatable inner-tube-shaped decelerator and parachute system will be carried to an altitude of 120,000 feet (37 kilometers) by a giant balloon. After release from the balloon, rockets will lift the disk to 180,000 feet (55 kilometers) while reaching supersonic speeds. Traveling at 3.5 times the speed of sound, the saucer's decelerator will inflate, slowing the vehicle, and then a parachute will deploy to carry it to the ocean's surface."

"A mission overview briefing about [the] upcoming flight test of the Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator (LDSD) experiment will be provided to reporters attending a media day on Monday, June 2, at the U.S. Navy's Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF) on Kauai, Hawaii. The public can watch the briefing via live streaming, at 11 a.m. PDT (2 p.m. EDT/8 a.m. HST)."

"The briefing will be streamed live on the agency's website at:
It will also be carried live on:

More information is  _here_

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