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SpaceX Targets November Launch After Pad Accident

SpaceX's facility at Launch Complex 39A. Photo: NASA
SpaceX's facility at Launch Complex 39A. Photo: NASA

SpaceX is targeting a return to flight in November after a Falcon 9 rocket exploded on a launch pad at Cape Canaveral earlier this month.

Launch Complex 40 was damaged and a rocket and satellite were destroyed from a fireball that erupted during fueling before a pre-launch test.

A source familiar with SpaceX’s plans said the company is ready to launch again in November, but from a different pad.

SpaceX leases two Florida launch pads. Launch Complex 39A, a former shuttle pad, was being refurbished for SpaceX’s Falcon heavy rocket and future crewed missions. Now, an industry source said that pad will be ready for launches in November.

The private space company has another pad at Vandenberg Air Force base in California, which is available for customers as well.

SpaceX hasn’t released any details on the so-called anomaly that destroyed the rocket. Founder Elon Musk says the company is still looking into the cause.

Brendan Byrne is WMFE's Assistant News Director, managing the day-to-day operations of the WMFE newsroom, editing daily news stories, and managing WMFE's internship program.

Byrne also hosts WMFE's weekly radio show and podcast "Are We There Yet?" which explores human space exploration.
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