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SpaceX Dragon Cargo Run Rescheduled for Dec. 19 Launch

SpaceX's next mission to bring cargo to the International Space Station, previously scheduled for launch on Dec. 16, has been pushed back to no earlier than 1:20 p.m. ET Dec. 19, NASA said Thursday. This flight of the two-stage Falcon 9 rocket and uncrewed Dragon cargo capsule is expected to mark the first test of an unorthodox system for landing the Falcon's first stage on a floating platform in the Atlantic Ocean.

While the Falcon stage descends to that tricky but potentially cost-saving touchdown, the Dragon would fly on to a rendezvous with the space station and deliver supplies and equipment — including NASA's Cloud-Aerosol Transport System. NASA said the three-day delay in liftoff from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida would give SpaceX "extra time to ensure they do everything possible on the ground to prepare for a successful launch." Both the rocket and the capsule are in good health, NASA said.

SpaceX Falcon 9 Blasts off for ISS 0:41

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— Alan Boyle