Minor Damage to SpaceX Engine Test Stand

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SpaceX was running a Merlin engine acceptance test earlier this week at their test site in Texas. At one point some hot gas blowback burned test stand pressure sensor wiring.

The test stand computer incorrectly thought that the fuel tank was low on pressure and opened up the helium supply, which caused an overpressure and damaged the tank.

Apart from some burned wiring on the stand and the test stand fuel tank, no damage was done. This issue has been fixed and that same engine will be back in test next week when SpaceX puts in a new test stand fuel tank.

This incident is expected to affect the launch pad hotfire at Vandenberg Air Force Base - but only by a week or so.


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