NASA Conducts Spin Test On15-foot-wide Saucer-shaped Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator (LDSD)
NASA's Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator (LDSD) project will be flying a rocket-powered, saucer-shaped test vehicle into near-space from the Navy's Pacific Missile Range Facility this June from Kauai, Hawaii. To prepare for the flight, a "spin" test was conducted from the gallery above a clean room at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, where this near-space experimental test vehicle is being prepared for shipment to Hawaii. During the broadcast, the 15-foot-wide, 7,000-pound vehicle underwent a "spin-table" test. The LDSD crosscutting demonstration mission will test breakthrough technologies that will enable large payloads to be safely landed on the surface of Mars, or other planetary bodies with atmospheres, including Earth.