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ULA pushes first Vulcan launch to fourth quarter
Posted: Sat, Jul 15, 2023, 7:22 AM ET (1122 GMT)
United Launch Alliance now expects the first Vulcan launch to take place in the fourth quarter. ULA CEO Tory Bruno provided the updated schedule in a briefing Thursday as he discussed the investigation into an incident during tests of a Centaur upper stage in March. The tank leaked hydrogen that ignited, severely damaging the stage. Bruno said a combination of higher loads than expected on a part of the tank, along with welds that were not as strong as previously tested, caused a crack that created the hydrogen leak. ULA is adding a layer of stainless steel to strengthen that part of the tank, and expects the vehicle to be ready for its Cert-1 mission, carrying payloads for Astrobotic, Amazon's Project Kuiper and Celestis, late this year.
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