SpaceX Launch Still Delayed Over Bad Weather
SpaceX has seen many delays regarding the launch of its 229-foot Falcon 9 rocket. But reports say that it will remain in the hangar at the Space Launch Complex 4-East until technicians can roll it to the pad in time for the final preparations.
According to Yahoo, the Falcon 9 rocekt, which was subject to an explosion in September, will now lift off from the hangar no earlier than Saturday, Jan. 14. This is delaying the launch for at least five days due to strong winds, rain and schedule conflicts at the California launch site.
The Los Angeles Times even noted that the delay could extend until Sunday due to high winds and rain at the Vadenberg Air Force Base. Still, whether the Falcon 9 rocket is launched on Saturday or Sunday, it will be the first since the company's launch pad explosion in September 2016.
Among the plans for the upcoming launch included carrying 10 satellites into space for Iridium Communications Inc. It is planning on establishing a constellation of satellites to deliver communication capabilities on land, sea and air.
SpaceX CEO Elon Musk originally wanted to return the rocket to flight by November last year. But the investigations regarding the explosion lasted longer than he had hoped. The cause for the failure, according to sources, involved the accumulation of oxygen in the inner liners of the rocket, destroying in the process the satellite that was supposed to be managed by Spacecom, an Israelli satellite operator in a project with Facebook to bring high-speed Internet access to remote parts of Africa.
An official statement from SpaceX also detailed the cause of the explosion, indicating that the propellant ignited, rupturing the helium tank that ultimately lost the Falcon 9 on the site. To remedy the situation and to avoid similar problems, the company modified the helium-loading process that caused the explosion in the first place.