Northrop Grumman went through a full scale test of fire of OmegA in its very first stage recently. OmegA is the company’s latest rocket which is being built for conducting missions on national security. Officials of the company said it was a successful trial. However, it seemed that things might have turned a bit downside because there were sparks and burnt fragments were observed emitting the nozzle. OmegA has an approximate radius of 24 feet and is 80 feet in length. In its first stage, it fired for 122 seconds at Promontory, which is the company’s test facility. In the static fire test, about 2 million pounds of thrust was formed which is equal to eight and a half jumbo jets.
Northrop Grumman mentioned that the test was conducted to check the ballistics of the motor, control of the position of nozzle, insulation as well as joints. Vice President of the company and OmegA launch system’s capture lead, Kent Rominger said that what they saw can be confirmed as a successful test.
He further said that motors of rockets are tested at both low and high temperatures. This particular test was conducted at 90 degrees more temperature in order to get the maximum thrust. He said that everything went out as planned. However, towards the end while the engine was tailing off, some anomaly was noticed at the exit cone.
They would have to look into it once again. Rominger also said that the huge thick black smoke that was seen during the test was normal. Even on ground when motor is burnt during tests, black smoke is seen. In space, the smoke was cleaner than on ground. Regarding the anomaly, he said that they would look into the data properly before confirming whether something has gone wrong or not. He also said that this would not affect the 2nd stage full scale static fire test of OmegA.