August 17, 2009

NASA reschedules Ares I rocket test

NASA and Alliant Techsystems Inc. have rescheduled the first full-scale, full-duration test of the new Ares I first-stage solid rocket motor.

The test, originally scheduled for Aug. 25, will take place at the ATK test facility in Promontory, Utah, on Aug. 27. NASA said the new date allows key NASA and ATK personnel to support the test, as well as the upcoming STS-128 space shuttle Discovery mission that's targeted for launch next Monday.

The static firing of the five-segment solid motor will last two minutes, NASA said, and will provide thrust, roll-control, acoustics and vibration data as engineers continue to design Ares I.

The Ares I rocket is to launch the Orion spacecraft and the next generation of NASA astronauts.