New Horizons And Its Mission

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New Horizons and Its Mission The New Horizons space probe is an interesting piece of technology. We’ve sent this probe into the depths of space, farther than any other probe has traveled. This probe survived the asteroid belt, is surviving the Kuiper belt, and it was able to complete it’s mission. We know more about Pluto now than we ever have. New Horizons will continue to explore space and send us discoveries that it has made. NASA uses a variety of rockets for every launch. The rocket New Horizons uses is the Atlas V 551. This rocket is part of the Atlas V400/500 family, which is operated by the United Launch Alliance. These rockets are very reliable, and as such, have been in use since 2002. There was only one failed launch with these…show more content…
The Atlas V 551 also has 5 Aerojet Solid Rocket Boosters to add extra thrust power to the launch. The boosters burn for 94 seconds and they are all rigged to go off in sequence; with 1 and 2 set to go first and 3, 4, and 5 to follow after a second and a half. Each of the boosters are 20 meters in height, 1.58 meters in diameter, and 5,740 kilograms of inert mass (Spaceflight). An Interstage Adapter is used to connect the parts of the rocket with different diameters. There are two types; the Cylindrical Interstage Adapter (0.32 meters in height, 3.83 meters in diameter, and 285 kilograms) and the C-ISA Adapter (3.81 meters in height, 3.83 meters in diameter, and 2,212 kilograms) (Spaceflight). The Centaur Upper Stage is 12.68 meters in length, 3.05 meters in diameter and has an inert mass of 2,243 kilograms. This part has a single engine and also uses liquid oxygen and kerosene to propell the probe (Spaceflight). Finally, at the top of thr rocket is the Payload Fairing. This part keeps the spacecraft safe against the harsh enviroments that the whole rocket experiences when it begins to leave the atmosphere. There are three different PLF lengths; the shortest one is 20.7 meters long, the medium one is 23.4 meters long, and the largest one is 26.4 meters long (Spaceflight). The spacecraft itself is about the size and mass of a piano. Currently, it’s travelling at a breakneck speed of 14 kilometers per second (Munroe). These incredibly
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