00:36 GMT +320 September 2019
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    The United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket with Orbital ATK’s Cygnus spacecraft onboard is seen shortly after Launch Complex 41 Vertical Integration Facility on December 2, 2015

    ULA to Name Cause of US Rocket's Early Booster Shutdown in Week

    © AFP 2019 / AUBREY GEMIGNANI
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    United Launch Alliance is close to announcing the reason of premature booster shutdown in a March 22 launch of the Cygnus spacecraft, ULA President and CEO Tory Bruno told Sputnik.

    COLORADO SPRINGS (Sputnik) — United Launch Alliance (ULA) will likely announce the cause of premature booster shutdown in a March 22 launch of the Cygnus spacecraft, which uses the Russian-made RD-180 rocket engine, in a week, ULA President and CEO Tory Bruno told Sputnik.

    "We are very close to isolating it to a component. I am confident we will be able to state that [cause] perhaps in a week. But as of today we are still closing up branches on the fault tree," Bruno said on the margins of the 32nd Space Symposium in Colorado Springs.

    When asked whether he thinks the cause was in the Russian engine, Bruno said, "I am not ready to say yet."

    Cygnus is an unmanned spacecraft that carries cargo to the International Space Station and launches commercial and military satellites. It was launched on an Atlas V, a two-stage rocket that uses the Russian-made RD-180 rocket engine and a Centaur rocket upper stage.

     

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    Tags:
    RD-180 rocket engine, Cygnus, United Launch Alliance (ULA), Tory Bruno, United States
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