NASA launches sounding rocket, parachute test from Wallops Island

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The Advanced Supersonic Parachute Inflation Research Experiment (ASPIRE) payload in the Testing and Evaluation lab at NASA Wallops.
Credits: NASA/Berit Bland

WALLOPS ISLAND, Va. – NASA launched a Terrier-Black Brant IX suborbital sounding rocket on October 4 from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia.

The rocket carried the Advanced Supersonic Parachute Inflation Research Experiment (ASPIRE) from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena. The mission will evaluate the ASPIRE payload, which is designed to test parachute systems in a low-density, supersonic environment.

Approximately two minutes into the flight, the project is expected to reach an altitude of 32 miles. The payload will splash down in the Atlantic Ocean about 40 miles from Wallops Island where it will be recovered and returned to Wallops for data retrieval and inspection.