Weather Forces Delay for SpaceX Cargo Delivery and Rocket Landing

August 15, 2014 – 01:41 pm

Image: SpaceX FalconSpaceX had to delay the launch of a Dragon cargo capsule to the International Space Station on Monday, due to threatening clouds that came too close to the pad.

The two-stage Falcon 9 was scheduled for launch from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida at 4:33 p.m. ET Monday. But anvil clouds came within 10 nautical miles of the launch pad, in violation of flight rules. That led mission managers to scrub the attempt with two minutes and 39 seconds left in the countdown.

Liftoff was rescheduled for Tuesday at 4:10 p.m. ET, but the forecast called for only a 50-50 chance of acceptable weather.

SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket stands on its launch pad at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida in preparation for Monday's launch. SpaceX

Espresso ... in ... spaaace!

The robotic mission's primary objective is to deliver more than 4, 300 pounds (1, 950 kilograms) of supplies and payloads, ranging from food and other everyday essentials to scientific experiments to the Italian-built ISSpresso machine. This is the sixth of at least 12 uncrewed cargo resupply flights covered by a $1.6 billion contract between NASA and SpaceX.

ISSpresso is designed to provide the space station's crew — including NASA astronaut Scott Kelly, who's spending a year in orbit — with fresh-brewed cups of espresso coffee in weightlessness. It's all part of a commercially funded experiment to make life more comfortable in space.

"We're going to learn a lot as this unfolds over the next year, " Dan Hartman, NASA's deputy manager for the space station program, told reporters Sunday. "If an espresso machine comes back and we get a lot of great comments from the crew ... it's kind of like the ice cream thing, right, when we fly ice cream every now and then. It's just to boost spirits. Those kinds of things, I think, will be commonplace."


Source: www.nbcnews.com

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