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Accident At Mojave Airport

Posted: Fri Jul 27, 2007 8:33 am
by ONTFlyer
Sorry if this has already been posted...

Just hearing word over the scanners here at my station that Kern Co. Fire responded to an accident earlier this afternoon at the Mojave (MHV) airport. Preliminary reports are sadly that there are two fatalities. The initial call came in as an explosion in an area where rocket testing is done at the airport. That's all the info I have right now. I am still trying to gather more info from a friend that works for KCF. Will try to update when I can. If anyone has more info please let us know.

ONTFlyer

RE: Accident At Mojave Airport

Posted: Fri Jul 27, 2007 8:42 am
by jfktowerfan

RE: Accident At Mojave Airport

Posted: Fri Jul 27, 2007 9:30 am
by FlightShadow
Reports now say now 2 people are dead, 4 are critically wounded. My thoughts go out to all involved, and let us hope those cricitally wounded pull through.

[Edited 2007-07-27 02:31:31]

RE: Accident At Mojave Airport

Posted: Fri Jul 27, 2007 9:32 am
by SkyvanMan
Looks like an explosion of a rocket launch site since there was a Scaled Composites truck close by and I saw a truss damaged. There have been 2 deaths reported and four people were injured. They say a tank may have exploded and a sonic boom occurred. I am listening to it right now on ABC 7 news. The explosion was at a remote test site on the Northeast side of the airport. They have to send haz-mat crews in but it is not safe yet. They know that Nitrous Oxide was involved but they don't know much else according to a County Fire Official. It was definitely at Scaled Composites since Burt Rutan is on the way and it has been confirmed by the fire official. The company is trying to figure out what happened right now. That's all I've gotten from ABC 7 so far.

RE: Accident At Mojave Airport

Posted: Fri Jul 27, 2007 10:54 am
by OPNLguy
Quoting SkyvanMan (Reply 3):
They know that Nitrous Oxide was involved but they don't know much else according to a County Fire Official. It was definitely at Scaled Composites since Burt Rutan is on the way and it has been confirmed by the fire official.

I read on another board that this may be involved..

http://www.scaled.com/projects/tiero..._general/Monods_and_test_stand_800

RE: Accident At Mojave Airport

Posted: Fri Jul 27, 2007 10:55 am
by fanofjets
This is what I have gleaned from CNN:

"It happened at the Mojave Air and Space Port during a test of a new rocket motor for SpaceShipTwo -- a spaceship being built for Virgin Galactic, Richard Branson's space tourism company, a source said. The motor uses nitrous oxide, the source said.

A spokeswoman for the spaceport, about 80 miles north of Los Angeles, said the blast was on a remote pad.

Aerial video of the blast aftermath showed a charred and twisted flatbed trailer attached to a truck cab with a large silver tank next to it. Large pieces of debris appeared to be strewn for hundreds of yards from the center.

About 200 yards away was a bunker with a truck owned by Scaled Composites...."

RE: Accident At Mojave Airport

Posted: Sat Jul 28, 2007 12:54 am
by lightsaber
My sympathies to the families of the departed.

This is very sad and is the talk of my work. We're a propulsion department that also makes rocket engines. There is a reason rocket test stands are always very remote; rockets simply do not work well except with incredibly reactive fuels due to the required intensity of combustion. Thus, the chance of explosion is always there. You plan to avoid the worst, but sometimes it happens.  Sad

Propulsion analysis, integration, and test is my field. So while I didn't know the individuals killed, its a small field (about 2,000 engineers nationally) and many of my coworkers will be attending the funerals.  Sad

Lightsaber