11 August 2014
Despite a parachute not working as intended upon deployment, NASA officials insist that the recent test of a new re-entry system to be used at Mars met most of its objectives. Ian Clark, principal investigator at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, said, “The vehicle did an amazing job of getting to the right speed and altitude.” Project Manager Mark Adler said that this was one of three test flights, adding, “The idea of taking 200 pounds of Kevlar and nylon and deploying it at 2,500 mph, 200 pounds that inflated would be the size of a small warehouse, is certainly a challenging endeavor." On Friday, officials released video of the test taken by cameras mounted on the Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator (LDSD). Other than the parachute, the LDSD’s systems performed well. Clark noted that engineers are already redesigning the parachute for the next test. (Image Credit: NASA)
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