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Photos: NASA's 'Flying Saucer' for Mars Landings — 2nd Test Flight

Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator Dress Rehearsal

NASA/Bill Ingalls

NASA's Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator project will test new technologies for landing future robotic and human Mars missions, and returning large payloads to Earth. See photos of what NASA calls its "flying saucer" from its second test flight in June 2015 in this Space.com gallery. HERE: The full mission dress rehearsal for the Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator took place on May 29, 2015, at the U.S. Navy Pacific Missile Range Facility in Kauai, Hawaii.

Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator Drop

NASA TV

The Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator releases from its balloon on the second test flight, June 8, 2015, at the U.S. Navy Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF) in Kauai, Hawaii.

Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator Partial Chute

NASA TV

The Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator launched on its second test flight, June 8, 2015, at the U.S. Navy Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF) in Kauai, Hawaii. After reaching maximum altitude, the parachute failed to deploy fully, resulting in a partial chute.

Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator Clears Tower

NASA TV

The Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator launches on its second test flight, June 8, 2015, at the U.S. Navy Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF) in Kauai, Hawaii. Here the LDSD has detached from the tower and begins to ascend.

Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator Launching

NASA TV

The Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator launches on its second test flight, June 8, 2015, at the U.S. Navy Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF) in Kauai, Hawaii. Here the lifting balloon is seen as it begins to raise the LDSD still attached to the tower.

NASA LDSD Flying Saucer Launch

NASA TV

NASA's inflatable flying saucer, called the Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator, lifts off on the second test flight of Mars landing technologies on June 8, 2015. The inflatable decelerator also includes the largest supersonic parachute ever made by NASA.

Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator Second Test Flight Launch

NASA TV

The Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator launches on its second test flight, June 8, 2015, at the U.S. Navy Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF) in Kauai, Hawaii.

Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator Second Test Flight Launch

NASA TV

The Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator launches on its second test flight, June 8, 2015, at the U.S. Navy Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF) in Kauai, Hawaii. Here the lifting balloon just begins to rise.

Balloon Ready to Launch LDSD

NASA TV

The Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator is prepared for launch on its second test flight at the U.S. Navy Pacific Missile Range Facility in Kauai, Hawaii, on June 8, 2014. The balloon in the foreground will lift the test vehicle into the atmosphere.

Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator Flight Profile

NASA TV

This graphic details the flight profile of the Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator Flight Profile second test flight taking place on June 8, 2015, at the U.S. Navy Pacific Missile Range Facility in Kauai, Hawaii.

Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator Test Ready for Launch

NASA TV

The Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator is prepared for launch on its second test flight at the U.S. Navy Pacific Missile Range Facility in Kauai, Hawaii, on June 8, 2014.

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