Update: Sunday’s SpaceX-3 Launch Delayed

Delayed  Credit: S Money

Credit: S Money

Update: According to further information from Space News, the SpaceX-3 mission was delayed due to the discovery of “oily residue” on thermal blankets used to protect the Dragon spacecraft’s trunk. The concern was that out-gassing from the spots could potentially contaminate sensitive instruments fixed on the outside of the International Space Station.


SpaceNews is reporting that Sunday morning’s scheduled launch of the Dragon spacecraft to ISS is being delayed at least two weeks.

From the article :

“Both Falcon 9 and Dragon are in good health,” SpaceX spokeswoman spokeswoman Emily Shanklin said in the release. “Given the critical payloads on board and significant upgrades to Dragon, the additional time will ensure SpaceX does everything possible on the ground to prepare for a successful launch.”

Although no further details are available at the moment, and the release mentioned only “open items,” given the difficulties encountered on the Dragon’s last flight, when an undetected change in a vendor supplied valve resulted in three of the spacecraft’s four thruster pods failing to pressurize on obtaining orbit, it is no surprise the company is taking every possible precaution.


Posted in: SpaceX

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