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Music video by Rihanna performing Take A Bow. YouTube view counts pre-VEVO: 66288884. (C) 2008 The Island Def Jam Music Group.
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Payload fairing is one of the main components of a launch vehicle. The fairing protects the payload during the ascent against the impact of the atmosphere (aerodynamic pressure and aerodynamic heating). More recently, an additional function is to maintain the cleanroom environment for precision instruments.[clarification needed]
Outside the atmosphere the fairing is jettisoned, exposing the payload. At this moment mechanical shocks and a spike in acceleration might be observed.
The standard payload fairing is typically a cone-cylinder combination, due to aerodynamic considerations, however specialized fairings are in use as well. The type of fairing which upon jettisoning separates into two halves is called a clamshell fairing by way of analogy to the bifurcating shell of a clam.
In some cases the fairing may enclose both the payload and the upper stage of the rocket.
If the payload is attached both to the booster's core structures and to the fairing, the payload may still be affected by fairing's bending loads, as well as inertia loads due to vibrations caused by gusts and buffeting.
Launch failures caused by payload fairings 
The Augmented Target Docking Adapter was placed into orbit by an Atlas SLV-3 in June 1966. When the Gemini 9A spacecraft rendezvoused with it in an attempt to dock, the crew discovered that two lanyards which should have been removed before flight were still in place, preventing the fairing from opening completely, thus covering up the docking port.
On February 24, 2009, NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory satellite failed to reach orbit after liftoff presumably because the fairing on the Taurus XL launch vehicle failed to separate, causing the vehicle to retain too much mass and subsequently fall back to Earth; it landed in the Indian Ocean near Antarctica.
The same happened to the Naro-1, South Korea's first carrier rocket, launched on 25 August 2009. During the launch half of the payload's fairing failed to separate, and as a result the rocket was thrown off course. The satellite did not reach a stable orbit.
On March 4, 2011 NASA's Glory satellite launch failed to reach orbit after lift-off due to a fairing separation failure on the Orbital Sciences Taurus XL Launch Vehicle. This failure represented the second consecutive failure of a fairing on an Orbital Sciences Taurus XL vehicle.
- RUAG Space, a Zurich-based Swiss company, is the maker of fairings for Ariane, as part of the cooperation within the European space programme, and produces the 5m fairings for the Atlas V.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Payload fairing (space launch vehicles)|
- A Conceptual Design for the Space Launch capability of the peacekeeper ICBM 
- Thomas P. Sarafin, Wiley J. (1995) "Spacecraft Structures and Mechanisms--from Concept to Launch", ISBN 0-7923-3476-0 p. 47
- "Launch Mishap Ends OCO Mission"
- "NASA Satellite Crashes Before Reaching Orbit"
- "S. Korean satellite lost shortly after launch: gov't". Yonhap News. Retrieved 2009-08-26.
- "NASA science satellite lost in Taurus launch failure". SpaceFlight Now. Retrieved 2011-03-04.
- Brian Harvey, "Europe's Space Programme: To Ariane and Beyond", ISBN 1-85233-722-2, p. 150
- "Atlas V Launch Services User’s Guide". United Launch Alliance. 2010-03. Retrieved 2010-05-24.