SpaceX's Crew Dragon suffered a malfunction during an engine test Saturday. The anomaly that occurred at the company's facilities at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station resulted in large plumes of smoke.
BREAKING: #SpaceX Crew Dragon suffered an anomaly during test fire today, according to 45th Space Wing. Smoke could be seen on the beaches.— Emre Kelly (@EmreKelly) April 20, 2019
"On April 20, an anomaly occurred at Cape Canaveral AFS during Dragon 2 static test fire. Anomaly was contained and no injuries." pic.twitter.com/If5rdeGRXO
"On April 20, 2019, an anomaly occurred at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station during the Dragon 2 static test fire," Wing Spokesman Jim Williams told FLORIDA TODAY. "The anomaly was contained and there were no injuries."
SpaceX released a statement confirming the malfunction. "Earlier today, SpaceX conducted a series of engine tests on a Crew Dragon test vehicle on our test stand at Landing Zone 1 in Cape Canaveral, Florida. The initial tests completed successfully but the final test resulted in an anomaly on the test stand."
"Ensuring that our systems meet rigorous safety standards and detecting anomalies like this prior to flight are the main reasons why we test. Our teams are investigating and working closely with our NASA partners," the company further added.
Meanwhile, NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine also reported that NASA was investigating the failure.
NASA has been notified about the results of the @SpaceX Static Fire Test and the anomaly that occurred during the final test. We will work closely to ensure we safely move forward with our Commercial Crew Program. pic.twitter.com/yE2J5yGzA7— Jim Bridenstine (@JimBridenstine) April 21, 2019
Failures and malfunctions are bound to be part of any new program. However, it might be safe to assume that the incident will see SpaceX's flight test and schedule rescheduled.
In the meantime, Boeing is scheduled to fly its passenger spacecraft, the CST-100 Starliner, uncrewed in August. The second crewed flight should take place before the end of the year.