Dramatic New Photos of Antares Launch Failure


NASA has added a bunch of not-exactly-recent photos to its Flickr stream, including these dramatic photos of last October Antares launch failure. The Orbital ATK rocket exploded moments after lifting off on what would have been the Cygnus space tug’s third paid cargo run to the International Space Station.

Cygnus is slated to launch Dec. 3 atop an Atlas 5 rocket Orbital ATK bought from United Launch Alliance. Antares, meanwhile, is slated to return to flight next spring using a different engine, the Russian-built RD-181.

The photo dump follows NASA’s Oct. 29 release of the results of its independent failure investigation. The NASA Independent Review Team identified three possible technical root causes of the accident, a conclusion consistent with, but not identical to, Orbital’s own investigation.