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Masten vehicle lost in test flight
Posted: Wed, Sep 12, 2012, 8:51 AM ET (1251 GMT)
A test vehicle built by commercial suborbital vehicle developer Masten Space Systems crashed Tuesday during a test flight in California. The Xaero vehicle took off vertically from Masten's test site at the Mojave Air and Space Port and climbed to an altitude of one kilometer. However, the vehicle experienced problems during its powered descent causing it to crash, destroying it. The company said in a statement that the problem was likely caused by the failure of a throttle valve in the vehicle's engine. Masten is developing vertical takeoff and landing suborbital vehicles for suborbital research and other applications; Tuesday's test was the highest to date by the vehicle.
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