A giant supersonic parachute attached to a NASA-built UFO-shaped vehicle ripped apart just after it deployed at the edge of space during a test flight on Monday.
The vehicle, called the Low Density Supersonic Decelerator (LDSD), is designed to bring large payloads to Mars. The supersonic parachute is a crucial component of the system, necessary for slowing the spacecraft's descent enough to make a safe landing on the red planet.
This was not the first time the parachute failed. The parachute used for the first test flight of the vehicle — which was of a different design, also ripped apart during the flight system's first test flight last year.
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