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SpaceX Delays Falcon 9 Satellite Launch After Rocket Blowup

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SpaceX says it's delaying this week's Falcon 9 rocket launch by a day to review the circumstances behind a test flight that ended in a spectacular explosion on Friday. In a statement issued on Sunday, SpaceX spokesman John Taylor said the company is aiming to launch the AsiaSat 6 telecommunications satellite during a 3-hour, 15-minute window beginning at 12:50 a.m. ET Wednesday. That's a day later than previously planned.

Taylor said the circumstances surrounding the Falcon 9 launch from Cape Canaveral Air Force Base in Florida are "very different" from those for Friday's flight of the F9R prototype, which was designed to test technologies for bringing a rocket booster back for a landing after launch. Nevertheless, SpaceX's team wants to confirm there's no risk for orbital flight. "SpaceX prizes mission assurance above all," Taylor said. "This action is consistent with that philosophy." SpaceX said the F9R ("Falcon 9 Reusable") blew itself up in accordance with safety procedures after suffering an anomaly during the flight at its test range near McGregor, Texas.



— Alan Boyle