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NASA preparing for development motor-2 test

NASA's next-generation, five-segment solid rocket development motor -- or DM-2 -- is fully assembled in its test stand at ATK in Promontory, Utah. ATK photo

NEW DELHI (BNS): Preparations are under way for the testing of NASA's next-generation, five-segment solid rocket development motor -- DM-2 -- in September.

The test is designed to advance the understanding, safety, technology and capability of solid rocket motors, NASA said in its website.

This will be the second, full-scale, full-duration test of the new development motor, which follows the successful test of DM-1 last fall.

During this "cold motor" test, DM-2's overall temperature will be lowered to 40 degrees Fahrenheit to validate the motor's performance in cold weather. This is in contrast to the DM-1 test firing which was conducted at ambient temperature.

As the test is conducted, technicians will collect data from 759 sensors to assess the motor's performance and validate motor enhancements.

Measurements gathered will be used to evaluate thrust, roll control, acoustics, motor vibrations, nozzle modifications and insulation upgrades.

DM-2 includes several upgrades and technology improvements, including the addition of a fifth segment, a modified nozzle throat and upgraded insulated liner.

With these changes, engineers hope to improve performance and provide greater safety and reliability for NASA's next-generation launch vehicle.

A development test motor is used to simulate conditions experienced in flight. It offers engineers an opportunity to better assess the strength of the motor's current design, spot any flaws in the new designs, verify new materials and certify manufacturing processes.



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