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Elon Musk: The fireball that hit the SpaceX launcher revealed a complex failure

In a tweet on Friday, marking a week of silence, Musk addressed questions from the audience, and among other things said that a soft explosion that was heard seconds before the fireball erupted may be related to the cause of the malfunction

The moment of the explosion of the Falcon 9 launcher with the Amos 6 satellite on it on September 1. Screenshot from YouTube
The moment of the explosion of the Falcon 9 launcher with the Amos 6 satellite on it on September 1. Screenshot from YouTube

The investigation into the incident in which the Falcon 9 launcher of the SpaceX company, carrying the Israeli satellite Amos 6, caught fire is progressing. According to the CEO of SpaceX, Elon Musk, the investigation revealed a serious and complex failure.

According to Musk, the Falcon 9 explosion during a routine refueling operation was the most complicated in the history of SpaceX launches. He said that the engines did not start, so apparently there is no source of heat. Musk is asking for NASA and the public's help in investigating the malfunction.
The explosion occurred two days before the rocket's scheduled launch, during a routine pre-launch operation at Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. Based on Musk's tweets on Twitter, the cause of the explosion is completely puzzling. He directly contacted NASA, the Federal Aviation Administration and the Air Force Systems Evaluation and Implementation Investigation Team (because it is a US Air Force base) for assistance.

Musk tweeted about the loss of Falcon 9 hours after the incident, noting that the source of the explosion appeared to be in the liquid oxygen tank in the upper stage but the cause was "still unknown". Since then Musk's account was silent for over a week until yesterday (Friday) he wrote: "We are still working on the investigation of the burning of the Falcon. This is becoming the most difficult and complex failure we have ever had in the last 14 years," Musk wrote. "It is important to note that this happened during a routine filling operation. Engines did not start, there was no apparent source of heat."
"In particular, we will try to understand the weak explosion that was heard a few seconds before the fireball went out." said.

Twitter user Eric Bowen asked if the company's Dragon spacecraft would have survived the event if it had been there in a crowded space 6. Musk replied, “Yes. It looked instantaneous from a human perspective, but it was really rapid fire, not an explosion. Dragon could have gotten away with it just fine.”
Experts in the field of space stated that this is the first refueling accident of an American missile in several decades, and point out that the possibility that it is a defect that originates in the launch vehicle, or that the source of the malfunction is actually in the ground refueling system is being examined.
Musk apologized for not being able to update regarding the accident of a Tesla car that was in automatic driver mode in April: "Very busy lately," he said. Musk also owns Tesla Motors and the solar energy company SolarCity.

9 תגובות

  1. If there was a preliminary explosion, then there is a real chance of sabotage. I would not be as enthusiastic about it as is customary in our country.

    But the first direction that came to my mind already on the day of the accident, these are the same people who insured their equipment for 300 million when the actual equipment is worth maybe 200 million. (at least according to press releases).

    Insurance fraud is much more common than all other sabotage activities combined.

  2. Asker, usually the cargo is put up at the very end, but always before refueling, because when the rocket is fueled it is in a relatively vulnerable state, and for security reasons you don't get any closer to it, except for a manned spacecraft and then they will drive the astronauts there a few hours before the launch.

  3. In my opinion, they should investigate the development team of the Falcon, especially those whose name is Muhammad or something similar.

    There is a pre-explosion, because someone must have put something in there.
    Because according to logic, the missile was completely off, except for control systems, and an explosion in the part belonging to the rocket itself is far from reality.
    And in my opinion, the answer will not be found through a routine investigation of the missile parts.

    Response to Shaul's question
    So of course it was possible, but increases the costs significantly, and does not reduce anything in the real risk, it is possible that this specific case would have been avoided if there was such a procedure, but the case in question is much rarer, because as I mentioned before, it is a missile that is completely off

  4. Has anyone figured out why he thinks the Dragon spacecraft would have survived the event if it had been there at Amos 6? In what respect is it more durable?

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