Falcon I Fails

Historic SpaceX Launch Set for Today March 24: The World's Lowest Cost Rocket to Orbit

Falcon I Launch Fails, SpaceRef

"The Falcon I rocket was launched today at 5:30 pm EST from Omelek Island and climbed upward for around a minute. Gwynne Shotwell, SpaceX's Vice President for Business Development, has confirmed that the rocket has been lost."

The following Statement was posted on the SpaceX website by Elon Musk:

"Falcon 1 Maiden Flight Update: Posted March 24, 2006 3:00 pm We had a successful liftoff and Falcon made it well clear of the launch pad, but unfortunately the vehicle was lost later in thefirst stage burn. More information will be posted once we have had time to analyze the problem."

Fuel leak apparently doomed Falcon 1, SpaceflightNow

Post-Launch Analysis, Kwajalein Atoll and Rockets

From Elon this morning: "Preliminary Fault Analysis - The good news is that all vehicle systems, including the main engine, thrust vector control, structures, avionics, software, guidance algorithm, etc. were picture perfect. Falcon's trajectory was within 0.2 degrees of nominal during powered flight. However, at T+25s, a fuel leak of currently unknown origin caused a fire around the top of the main engine that cut into the first stage helium pneumatic system. On high resolution imagery, the fire is clearly visible within seconds after liftoff.

Editor's 3:00 pm EST update: Launch control just that the countdown is in an unscheduled hold pending resolution of an issue.

Editor's 5:20 pm EST update: The count has resumed. T-10:00 and counting.

Editor's 5:30 pm EST update: LIFTOFF "Falcon I is Airborne at this time"

Editor's 5:30 pm EST update: The webcast went dead 10 seconds into the flight. I cannot reconnect.

Editor's 5:42 pm EST update: The Falcon 1 Mission has failed. No other information is available right now. Stay tuned.

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This page contains a single entry by Keith Cowing published on March 24, 2006 5:30 PM.

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