Weather stops SpaceX from blowing up more satellites

SpaceX launches have been suspended since September 1, after a massive explosion during a prelaunch test at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Fla. destroyed launch equipment and a $95 million satellite owned by Facebook.

SpaceX had gotten as far as completing a test firing on the launch pad at Vandenberg Air Force Base.

At the time, SpaceX was targeting a Monday launch of Falcon 9 from a pad at California's Vandenberg Air Force Base to send 10 Iridium NEXT satellites into orbit for satellite operator Iridium.

The National Weather Service forecast for Vandenberg Air Force Base calls for a chance of rain through Thursday.

Iridium Corporate, whose satellites are being carried on board the Falcon 9, also tweeted about the delay.

Prior to the launch, ULA must conduct a wet dress rehearsal (WDR) of the Atlas V by fueling it with propellants to confirm its readiness to launch.

Elon Musk's Space Exploration Technologies Corp. has delayed a planned return to flight for another week owing to bad weather and predictions of continuing storms around a central California launch complex. The "static fire" test culminated in the ignition of the first stage's nine Merlin 1D engines for a few seconds, briefly ramping up to full power with 1.7 million pounds of thrust. The company also has a cargo resupply mission to the International Space Station, CRS-10, planned for early February.

The FAA said Friday it "accepted the investigation report. and has closed the investigation".

The launch will be SpaceX's first since August.

An investigation found that a failed canister of helium inside one of the rockets' oxygen tanks exploded upon launch.

SpaceX says it has changed its helium loading procedure to address the issue in the short term and will redesign the pressure vessels as a longer-term solution.

Those satellites are created to increase the company's speed and bandwidth.



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