SpaceX Rocket Launch Postponed Again

The privately owned company said it was forced to postpone the launch of six satellites into orbit due to weather conditions.

Irene Klotz
A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying a payload of Orbcomm communications satellites is seen at launch complex in Cape Canaveral, Fla., June 20, 2014.
A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying a payload of Orbcomm communications satellites is seen at launch complex in Cape Canaveral, Fla., June 20, 2014.Credit: AP
Irene Klotz

REUTERS - Space Exploration Technologies, or SpaceX, on Saturday delayed the planned launch of a Falcon 9 rocket carrying six communications satellites after cloudy skies socked in its Florida launch site.

The privately owned company had rescheduled launch for Saturday after encountering a technical problem minutes before a launch attempt on Friday from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.

The rocket carries six small satellites for Orbcomm Inc , a provider of machine-to-machine data and messaging services worldwide. "Today's Orbcomm launch attempt has been scrubbed due to weather." SpaceX wrote on its website. A spokeswoman for Orbcomm said in an email that the next launch attempt would be 5:30 p.m. EDT/2130 GMT on Sunday.

SpaceX had 53 minutes to launch the rocket, beginning at 5:46 p.m. EDT/2146 GMT, to put the Orbcomm satellites into their designated orbits some 500 miles (800 km) above Earth and inclined 47 degrees relative to the equator.

The launch on Friday was called off after engineers detected unexpected pressure readings in the rocket's second stage engine. SpaceX provided no additional details of the problem.

For Saturday's launch attempt, the California-based company, owned and operated by technology entrepreneur Elon Musk, canceled its webcast and provided no commentary about the launch countdown, a public service offered even for classified Department of Defense satellite launches.

"For the first time since the end of the Cold War, a space launch from Cape Canaveral will not be broadcast to the press and the public," Spaceflightnow.com, which provides live launch coverage, wrote on its website. SpaceX did not respond to emails about the blackout.

Comments

SUBSCRIBERS JOIN THE CONVERSATION FASTER

Automatic approval of subscriber comments.

Subscribe today and save 40%

Already signed up? LOG IN

ICYMI

Yair Lapid.

Yair Lapid Is the Most Israeli of All

An El Al jet sits on the tarmac at John C. Munro International Airport in Hamilton, Thursday, in 2003.

El Al to Stop Flying to Toronto, Warsaw and Brussels

An anti-abortion protester holds a cross in front of the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C.

Roe v. Wade: The Supreme Court Leaves a Barely United States

A young Zeschke during down time, while serving with the Wehrmacht in Scandinavia.

How a Spanish Beach Town Became a Haven for Nazis

Ayelet Shaked.

What's Ayelet Shaked's Next Move?

A Palestinian flag is taken down from a building by Israeli authorities after being put up by an advocacy group that promotes coexistence between Palestinians and Israelis, in Ramat Gan, Israel earlier this month

Israel-Palestine Confederation: A Response to Eric Yoffie