Last year several Clark Planetarium staff members had the opportunity to watch the DM-1 test firing of the Ares solid rocket motor in Promontory, Utah. I was there, watching the visual representation of what 3.6 million pounds of thrust (22 million horsepower) looks like and it was pretty incredible.
Next Tuesday, Aug. 31, 2010, at 9:05 a.m. (MDT), ATK and NASA will host a horizontal ground test firing of the Ares DM-2 (Ares Development Motor – 2) five-segment solid rocket motor…and you’re invited!
In fact, if you are a twitter user and would like to take advantage of an exclusive, up close view of the test, you can register with @ATKRocketNews (deadline to register is Aug. 26) on twitter and view the testing from the VIP launch site. You can also follow the #DM2 hash tag on the day of the event for the latest updates from the launch site.
The DM-2 is a five-segment rocket motor that is an upgraded version of the Shuttle’s 4-segment booster. This DM-2 test is being held in the morning as a “cold motor” test in which the motor will be cooled to 40 degrees F to measure the solid rocket motor performance at low temperatures.
If you would like to view next week’s test from the public viewing area rather than participating in the tweetup, travel approximately 20 miles west of Corinne, Utah, to the observation area located along State Road 83 North.
Lastly, we encourage you to post comments about the test here on our blog, or visit our facebook profile to upload any fan photos you would like to share.
Disclaimer: ATK is a financial supporter of Clark Planetarium. They sponsor the ATK IMAX Theatre through annual cash and in-kind donations.