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SpaceX Aborts Launch of Falcon 9 Right before Lift-Off

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Published on : May 11, 2018

The launch of the Falcon 9 rocket developed by SpaceX threw an abort during the startup sequence in the last minute of launch countdown, forcing the launch to delay for their next launch window. The backup launch time is set to Friday, May 11 at 4:14 p.m. EDT, and closes at 6:21 p.m. EDT.

SpaceX will try again today (Friday) at 4:14 p.m. ET. If successful, the rocket will blast Bangladesh’s first geostationary communications satellite, the Bangabandhu Satellite-1, into space.

Engineers rushed to pinpoint what triggered the abort signal. Ultimately unable to locate and solve the problem before the 6.22 p.m. ET launch window close, SpaceX announced the launch attempt was over. “At 5.47 p.m. ET Falcon 9 threw an abort in the final minute of countdown and it seems we are … unable to launch within the launch window for today at this time,” Michael Hammersley, a SpaceX materials engineer, told viewers of the company’s launch webcast.

Once again, the media and American public are trying to create unnecessary drama between these organizations that are working toward the same goal: resuming human spaceflight from the United States. NASA’s penchant for caution is important in checking SpaceX’s daring and impulsive tendencies, while SpaceX is expanding the realm of possibilities for space travel that NASA seems too afraid to do.

Neither organization could accomplish the daunting task on its own; SpaceX would not be benefiting from massive federal grants, and NASA may never have mustered up the courage to reembrace the uncertainty inherent to human space travel.