SpaceX delays Falcon 9 launch until Thursday
Poor weather conditions prevent rocket from lifting off
SpaceX chief Elon Musk has confirmed that the company has postponed the launch of its Falcon 9 rocket, owing to poor weather conditions.
The launch was scheduled to take place today from the Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, but Musk revealed on Twitter that high-altitude winds have forced the mission to be rescheduled for Thursday.
The aerospace firm are set to deliver three satellites into orbit, reports Engadget. The first is a satellite that will spend five-and-a-half years in space “carrying out radar and imaging work” for the Spanish government and businesses.
The second payload is two SpaceX satellites that will be used in the first phase of testing in “an ambitious plan to eventually deliver global satellite internet”, says Ars Technica. The company aims to send “more than 4,000” satellites into orbit by 2024.
The rocket itself, one of the firm’s frequently used Falcon 9s, features a booster stage that was recovered from a previous mission.
SpaceX hopes to not only land the booster stage of this rocket, but also recover the “clam-shell-like nose cone” that protects the craft’s payload, says the Daily Mail.
Each nose cone costs £4.3m, the website says, so its recovery could bring down the cost of SpaceX’s subsequent missions.
The launch is scheduled to commence at 9:17am ET (12.17pm GMT) and will be streamed on SpaceX’s official website, says Ars Technica.