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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

SpaceX Conducts Static Test Firing

SpaceX Conducts Static Test Firing

The SpaceX The Falcon 9 aborted its launch attempt on May 19 with an engine cutoff. Following the cutoff, the launch team has established the Falcon 9 rocket is in a safe configuration. Early data shows that the chamber pressure on engine 5 was high. The teams will continue to look at the data and assess a launch attempt on May 22.

This follows a launch dress rehearsal April 30 by the SpaceX launch team that concluded with a brief engine firing to verify the company's Falcon 9 rocket is ready to launch. The practice countdown also tested some of the systems on the Dragon spacecraft that will fly to the space station.

"Woohoo, rocket hold down firing completed and all looks good!" reported Elon Musk on his Twitter account. Musk is the owner and chief designer for SpaceX, or Space Exploration Technologies. The company's engineers are reviewing data from the test, SpaceX reported.

SpaceX is preparing for its second Commercial Orbital Transportation Services, or COTS, demonstration to show that private industry can build and launch spacecraft on regular cargo resupply missions to the station. This rocket and spacecraft will not carry people, but will have about 1,200 pounds of supplies onboard for the six astronauts and cosmonauts working on the space station.

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