The ‘LOFTID (Lower Earth Orbit Flight Test of an Inflatable Decelerator)’ test conducted by the American space research agency NASA for safe landing of spacecraft in manned extraterrestrial experiments has been successful. Loftid was launched with the weather satellite at 4.49 am (Thursday 3.19 pm IST) on a United Launch Alliance’s ‘Atlas V’ rocket from California, US.
Photo credit: NASA
Rushing at a speed of 20,000 kilometers per hour.
The Atlas V rocket first launched a weather satellite into orbit and then ‘lofted’ it back to Earth. Immediately ‘Loftid’ unfolded like an overturned umbrella and began to travel towards Earth at a speed of more than 20 thousand kilometers per hour. Its speed is reduced due to atmospheric friction. After reaching an altitude of several thousand feet above the surface of the earth, the parachute broke and fell into the Pacific Ocean east of the Honolulu Islands in Hawaii.
The heat shield, which started its journey towards Earth at 5.04 pm Indian time on Thursday, touched down at 5.38 pm. After finding the site, scientists sent Kahana-2 to retrieve ‘Loftid’. It is estimated that the ship lofted and will take two days to reach the coast of California. Later, the scientists studied the data recorded by the sensors in ‘Loftid’.. How fast did it hit the ground? What temperature was born? Details of weather resistance will be examined.
To adapt to the Martian climate..
The atmosphere on Mars is thinner than Earth’s. Hence, there is less friction in the environment. So, at what speed, under what conditions should the probe land, what should be done to slow down, what kind of changes in ‘loftid’ are required. Based on this data, the inflatable heat shield will be finalized and used in future space experiments.
Prone to fits of apathy. Unable to type with boxing gloves on. Internet advocate. Avid travel enthusiast. Entrepreneur. Music expert.