Saturday, September 12, 2009

Romania to launch its first space rocket in October

The Romanian Aeronautics and Cosmonautics Association (ARCA) announced on Wednesday that it will launch in October the country's first space rocket, in what is the final rehearsal for a 30 million dollar astronautic contest for landing a privately built spacecraft on the moon, initiated by the Google corporation.

The rocket dubbed Helen will be launched from a Black Sea platform and is a three-stage space rocket capable of reaching the outer space in suborbital flight, ARCA president Dumitru Popescu told a press conference.

During the Google Lunar X Prize Contest, it will reach the moon in three days, and during the Black Sea drill it is expected to reach cosmic space in two hours.

Navy watercraft will take to Black Sea high waters the launch set consisting of rocket Helen and the balloon that is to carry it to the upper atmosphere. The equipment will be unloaded from the ships onto the sea platform, where the balloon will be inflated and the rocket stages fueled with an ecological mix of hydrogen peroxide in a 70 percent concentration. The entire set has a launch weight of over 2,000 kilograms.

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