Robert Sackheim, assistant director and chief engineer for propulsion at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, AL, will lead a team to review the automatic shutdown of a recent
Space Shuttle Main Engine test at NASA’s Stennis Space Center, MS.
    At about 5 seconds into the planned 200-second test of a new high-pressure fuel turbopump configuration, higher than expected test temperatures caused the Shuttle Main Engine to shut itself down using its own internal safety mechanisms.
    The engine being tested was not a flight configuration.  It is a development unit used to validate the engine’s capability to operate at higher-than-normal temperature levels.  The test used a main combustion chamber smaller than those currently flown on the Shuttle, which increases temperatures in the pumps to test for
different temperature limits.