Anomaly in RCS Behind Epsilon-6 Rocket Launch Failure: JAXA

Science Society

Tokyo, Oct. 18 (Jiji Press)--An abnormality occurred in one of the attitude control devices mounted on the second-stage engine of the Epsilon-6 rocket, whose launch ended in failure last week, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, or JAXA, said Tuesday.

After the launch of the three-stage solid-propellant rocket, the first-stage rocket engine worked normally and was detached as scheduled. The second-stage engine showed no combustion problem, but an abnormal attitude was confirmed immediately after the engine used up its fuel, JAXA told a science ministry meeting.

The attitude was off to the lower right by some 21 degrees more than planned, according to JAXA.

The space agency judged that the rocket could not enter Earth orbit and sent a self-destruction signal to the rocket 6 minutes and 28 seconds after liftoff.

Analyses of flight and other data showed that one function of a reaction control system, which uses thrusters to control attitude and other factors, did not work after the combustion of the second-stage engine, according to JAXA.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press