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SpaceX Rocket Launch Aborted

  • VOA News

This framegrab from NASA-TV shows the Falcon 9 SpaceX rocket on the launch pad at complex 40 at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Cape Canaveral, Florida, seconds after the launch was aborted due to technical problems early Saturday May 19, 2012.
A technical problem has forced the company SpaceX to abort what would have been the first launch of a privately owned capsule to the International Space Station.

The pre-dawn launch of the Dragon Capsule from Cape Canaveral, Florida was scrubbed half a second before it was to occur on Saturday.

Initial plans are to try again Tuesday morning.

The capsule is on a long, thin white rocket owned by SpaceX. It is carrying supplies for the International Space Station.

SpaceX president Gwynne Shotwell says the company decided to stop the launch after a computer detected high chamber pressure in one of the engines. She said the cause is not clear.

"Engine 5 was trending high, but it hit the abort limit at T-minus-point 5," Shotwell said.

Shotwell insisted, "this is not a failure," because all nine of the rocket's engines are needed for lift-off.

NASA/SpaceX press conference on failed launch

The Dragon Capsule is carrying 544 kilograms of cargo for what would be a test flight.

The cargo is not considered essential for the space station crew.

SpaceX received more than $380 million in funding from the U.S. space agency, NASA, which retired its space shuttle fleet last year.

Video of failed SpaceX Launch
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