SpaceX Scrubs Falcon Launch Due to Computer Issues

July 3, 2017

SpaceX looked to continue its streak with a third mission in just nine days. However, the mission got scrubbed at the last minute. The issue? Surprisingly not the Florida weather, despite a 40 percent chance of rain. Instead, it was an issue with the rocket’s guidance systems.

The flight computers halted the countdown just moments before the engines fired up. At that point, the mission was forced into a 24-hour scrub. The company plans to attempt it again tomorrow around 7:37 pm Eastern Standard Time.

This Falcon 9 rocket holds particular importance — all due to its cargo. SpaceX will carry up an Intelsat 35e comms satellite into geostationary orbit (36,000 km above Earth’s surface). The satellite will be the heaviest one ever put into orbit by SpaceX, coming in at a whopping 6,761 kg.

After this launch, Kennedy Space Center and Cape Canaveral Air Force Station will feel a little empty. Neither location is set to have launches until August 3. United Launch Alliance is scheduled to send a data relay up for NASA. Fans of Elon Musk’s company will find the draught frustrating given the three successful launches produced by the company in a little over a week. The next launch is planned for August 10 when SpaceX will make a supply run to the International Space Station.

Tomorrow’s launch (should all go as planned) will also not include a landing attempt after takeoff. The insanely heavy Intelsat 35e probe means that fuel is crucial for the Falcon 9. Thus, all resources will be used to make sure the payload gets to geostationary orbit and there won’t be enough propellant left to have a stabilized landing. This isn’t the company’s first time losing a rocket for the sake of the payload. The satellite being launched will join other Intelsat probes to provide communications coverage to rural areas of Europe, Africa, and the Americas.

You can watch the frustrating scrubbed launch in the video below. You can start dissecting what caused the scrub around the 15-minute mark:

SEE ALSO: Watch SpaceX’s  Falcon 9 Rocket Land in a Swimming Pool in Augmented Reality

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