SpaceX CRS-1 Mission | October 2012 (Official)

December 21, 2016 – 03:46 pm

On 8 October 2012 UTC, SpaceX began its first of twelve (at least) resupply missions to the ISS with the launch of Dragon atop the fourth (and penultimate) Falcon 9 v1.0 rocket. A wet dress rehearsal of the rocket was completed on 31 August, followed by a 29 September static fire. Both of these tests were undertaken without Dragon attached to the vehicle stack. 76 seconds into the mission, engine #1 of the lower stage suffered a loss of pressure, triggering an engine shutdown - debris could be seen in the telescopic video of the launch. Long touted by SpaceX, the vehicle was able to compensate for the reduced performance by burning the remaining 8 engines for a longer length of time, demonstrating for the first time Falcon 9's unique engine out capability, still managing to insert Dragon into a "flawless" orbit.

Piggybacking along with Dragon uphill was the Orbcomm FM44 satellite as a secondary payload. Due to safety regulations required by NASA to reduce the potential for orbital conflicts between the ISS and similar-inclination objects, a greater than 99% probability is required that the stage will reach their orbital destination. With the loss of the number one engine, and the additional fuel used to compensate for this, the estimate for Orbcomm FM44 dropped to 95%. Due to this, SpaceX did not attempt an upper stage restart and Orbcomm FM44 was placed into a low, rapidly-decaying orbit - and was subsequently declared a loss.

Dragon berthed with the ISS on flight day 3, and subsequently 454kg of cargo was unloaded from Dragon to the ISS, and another 905kg was returned. Roughly one sixth of its upmass capability, and one third of its downmass capability. After nearly 18 days attached to the station, Dragon was unberthed and reentered the atmosphere on 28 October 2012.


Source: spacexstats.com

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