Good morning from Florida where a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon spacecraft stand ready to liftoff later this morning to deliver some 5,500 pounds of experiments and equipment to the crew of the International Space Station! Launch is scheduled for 9:39 a.m. EST from the iconic Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
The weather forecast calls for a 70 percent chance of acceptable conditions at launch time. The SpaceX launch team is fueling the two-stage Falcon 9 and will soon begin pumping liquid oxygen into the launch vehicle’s tanks in a few minutes.
Refined kerosene is loading into the second stage of the Falcon 9 rocket as the countdown continues on pace.
Pumps are now loading refined kerosene known as RP-1 into the fuel tanks of the Falcon 9 first stage. Liquid oxygen will be loaded into the first stage later this morning. The nine Merlin engines of the first stage burn a combination of kerosene fuel and oxygen to produce about 1.7 million pounds of thrust at liftoff. Launch remains on track for 9:39 a.m. EST.
The SpaceX launch team is prepping to begin loading fuel and liquid oxygen into the Falcon 9 rocket standing at Launch Complex 39A for liftoff at 9:39 a.m. EST.
Launch Weather Officer Mike McAleenan informed the launch teams that today’s outlook forecasts a 70 percent chance of acceptable conditions at launch time. The concern is for cumulus clouds and the possibility of having to fly through precipitation. A light system of precipitation that is moving into the area is expected to clear away from the launch site by 9:20 a.m., about 20 minutes before launch time from Launch Complex 39A.
Next potential launch opportunity for SpaceX’s space station cargo mission is 9:39 a.m. EST Sunday. Live coverage starts at 8:45 a.m.
The next potential launch opportunity is Sunday at 9:38:59 a.m. EST. It would be an instantaneous launch window to allow the cargo-laden Dragon spacecraft to reach the International Space Station.
Today’s launch attempt has been scrubbed because of the thrust vector control system issue that developed late in today’s countdown, NASA Launch Commentator George Diller reports. The launch team is setting up for a 24-hour turnaround, meaning the team will try again tomorrow morning if the thrust vectoring issue is resolved. Like today, tomorrow’s weather forecast calls for a 70 percent chance of acceptable conditions.
The countdown has been held at T-13 seconds.