ATK Performs Rare Night Test of Shuttle Booster

ATK Performs Rare Night Test of Shuttle Booster

Save Story
Leer en espaƱol

Estimated read time: 1-2 minutes

This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.

Alex Cabrero ReportingThe future of space flight is happening in northern Utah today. ATK in Promontory ignited a solid fuel rocket booster in a rare nighttime test.

ATK Performs Rare Night Test of Shuttle Booster

It's the kind of rocket that goes on the side of the space shuttles. The booster is more than 120 feet long. It was tested at night because the next space shuttle mission, Discovery, will happen at night. Engineers want to test the booster to see how it will perform.

A lot of people watched the test tonight.

"You could feel it. You could hear it. Lights up the sky."

"Awesome sight to see. Lots of power out there."

Last time ATK had a nighttime test was 1992 and about 5,000 people showed up to check it out. It's exciting for fans, engineers, and even one of NASA's Astronauts .

Tony Antonelli, Astronaut: "There's nothing that generates this kind of power. There is no comparision."

Jody Singer, NASA: "We make sure we test it an understand it, before we attach them to the side of the shuttle."

The type of booster tested today will also be used on the next generation of space vehicles; the Ares 1.

Rick Burt, NASA: "The 2012 to 2014 time frames, is when we anticipate trying to have this vehicle ready."

ATK Performs Rare Night Test of Shuttle Booster

David King, NASA: "It's exciting for us. It's always good to be able to come out to the sites where we build this hardware and understand it better. And that's what this test is about, to try and understand how the rocket will perform on launch day."

Most recent Utah stories

Related topics



Get informative articles and interesting stories delivered to your inbox weekly. Subscribe to the Trending 5.
By subscribing, you acknowledge and agree to's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

KSL Weather Forecast