Pad abort test

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A pad abort test is a test of a launch escape system to determine how well the system could get the crew of a spacecraft to safety in an emergency on the launch pad.

Mercury pad abort test.

Project Mercury[edit]

Section sources.[1][2]

The Mercury program included several pad abort tests for the launch escape system with a boilerplate crew module.

  • 1959 July 22 - First successful pad abort flight test with a functional escape tower attached to a Mercury Boilerplate.
  • 1959 July 28 - A Mercury Boilerplate with instruments to measure sound pressure levels and vibrations from the Little Joe test rocket and Grand Central abort rocket/escape tower.

Project Apollo[edit]

Apollo Pad Abort Test 2

The Apollo program included several pad abort tests for the launch escape system with a boilerplate crew module.

Both tests were conducted at the White Sands Missile Range.

Orion[edit]

Artist's concept of an Orion pad abort test.

The Orion Pad Abort Test will start with the construction of the first Orion Boilerplate. It will be a basic mockup prototype to test the assembling sequences and launch procedures at NASA’s Langley Research Center while Lockheed aerospace engineers assemble the first rocket motors for the spacecraft’s escape tower. Lockheed Martin Corp. was awarded the contract to build Orion on Aug. 31, 2006. The first Pad Abort Test trial of the escape tower system was successfully completed at New Mexico’s White Sands Missile Range on May 6th, 2010.[3]

[4]

See also[edit]

  • Soyuz T-10-1, a Soyuz mission which ended with the use of the launch escape system

References[edit]