Oct 26 2016

Progeny Mk2 Inflight Anomaly Initial Report

Launch today of the first Progeny Mk2 rocket was marred by an explosive event which occurred 2-3s after ignition of the first stage booster, which appears to have completely disintegrated. The second stage booster was then lit, which cleared the payload of the explosion however following protocol the launch controllers armed the recovery chute the moment the explosion was detected and instead of waiting for vertical speed to go negative, the chute deployed during acceleration of the second stage, causing a G-load well past limits and shredding the chute. The booster then detached from the payload as designed and fell to the ground where it exploded, which leads us to believe it did not completely burn out. The payload itself, lacking an intact chute, did not survive impact with the ground.

It’s important to note two things at this time: 1) we are not yet completely sure of the order of events. Everything happened very fast and only careful review of video footage and the basic telemetry gathered by the tracking station will let us piece together exactly what happened when. 2) the second stage is meant to be activated by controllers well after the first stage separates, and we know for sure no controller activated the second stage, so it was lit off by itself somehow.

We will be spending the next few days or weeks reviewing all available data and designs for the Mk2 in order to come to a conclusive understanding of what led to this launch failure so we can then decide how to move forward. Until then all future Mk2 flights have been suspended. No other rocket launches are planned.