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News Link • Space Travel and Exploration

NASA Says Test Flight of New Inflatable Heat Shield a Success

• AP

An experimental heat shield for future spacecraft landings successfully survived a test launch Monday that brought it through the earth's atmosphere at speeds of up to 7,600 mph, NASA said.

The demonstration launch from Wallops Flight Facility on Virginia's Eastern Shore involved a 680-pound cone of high-tech rings covered by a thermal blanket of layers of heat-resistant materials. The Inflatable Reentry Vehicle Experiment, or IRVE-3, was launched from a three-stage Black Brant rocket for a suborbital flight.


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