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NASA expanding options for ISS support

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posted on May, 12 2010 @ 01:36 PM
I came across this and thought it was interesting.

Kennedy Space Center, Fla.:

SpaceX successfully test fired its Falcon 9 rocket March 13 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla. The firing clears a milestone toward the inaugural flight of a privately developed spaceship.

Future payloads and cargo to the International Space Station will one day be carried by commercially developed vehicles for NASA. The maiden demonstration flight of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon spacecraft is one step closer after a successful 3.5-second first-stage hot fire test on March 13, from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station's Launch Complex-40.

SpaceX Director of Mission Assurance and Integration Scott Henderson said the launch pad is fully activated.

"We've been through a successful booster tanking test," Henderson said. "And the static fire of the first stage demonstrated the full countdown sequence through engine ignition."

The two-stage fully integrated launch vehicle on the pad consists of a first stage powered by nine SpaceX-developed Merlin 1C engines, a second stage, an interstage, an unpressurized trunk and the Dragon spacecraft qualification unit.


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