NASA has successfully tested their Morpheus lander project, which is a prototype vehicle capable of vertical takeoff and landing. The test took place at the Shuttle Landing Facility area located at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
NASA has successfully tested their Morpheus lander prototype which is capable of vertical takeoff and landing.
The test took place at the Shuttle Landing Facility area located at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
It reportedly lasted 98 seconds, and in that time the Morpheus lander was able to reach an altitude of 800 feet at speeds up to 36 miles per hour.
The lander also maneuvered forward and down traversing 1300 feet during a 78-foot divert in a hazard avoidance simulation, before descending to the designated landing pad.
Testing the Morpheus lander involves a series of complex safety and technical procedures.
Video footage of the test flight shows it taking off from the ground over a flame trench, and navigating using the newly installed autonomous landing and hazard avoidance technology, which it uses to find safe landing sites.
The Morpheus lander has reportedly done several successful test flights so far including tests of other technological equipment for use on manned space missions.
It was developed at the Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center, and in case any future missions go wrong, Morpheus is equipped with an emergency engine abort system.