SpaceX had all plans ready to launch a Falcon 9 rocket into its first geostationary orbit transfer mission. The company had all the necessary arrangements. It even arranged a Livestream broadcast of the launch on November 28. However, due to very last minute changes, the company had to abort the launch only 48 seconds prior to the ignition. The rocket was about to take off from the Air Force Station in Cape Canaveral Florida. Arrangements were apparently perfect in arranging a 65 minute window of launch operations, the countdown beginning from 5:39 PM ET.
However, a last minute (literally) technical glitch forced the company to abort the mission only seconds before the ignition. In fact, this is the second cancellation of the mission. The rocket was about to leave early last week only, but they had to abort even that launch. Following the first cancellation, SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk noted in Twitter that the rocket developed abrupt problems in the booster liquid oxygen tank. However, the postponed arrangements were not perfect as it turns out from the last minute cancellation.
The last minute issue is still a mystery as everything was going according to plans. When the engines were starting and the launch timer commenced the last minute counting to 0, the rocket suddenly shut down the engines thereby effectively aborting the liftoff. Evidently, engineers are still trying to figure out why by analyzing the data obtained from the rocket.
The company is trying to develop its footprints into the commercial space travel industry. The proposed launch of the Falcon 9 would have been a significant milestone in the field. Now, following the cancellation of the program, engineers would have to figure out what went wrong in the elaborate mechanics of the rocket. The engineers probably cannot cite the reason that it is ‘not rocket science’ while trying to identify the malfunction. However, much to the relief of the company and its sponsors, the payload on the rocket remains as it is without any damage.
The purpose of sending the Falcon 9 into space was to install a new geostationary communications satellite into the orbit. This new satellite, known as the SES-8, is a product developed in the facilities of Luxembourg company, SES World Skies. SpaceX is trying hard to put up this commercial communications satellite into the space. The company also has plans to extend its operations to other global services who required the placement of their own satellites into space.
However, the Falcon 9 did not cooperate and developed last minute problems. Also know as version 1.1, the 224 foot rocket has had problems from the beginning. The first testing of the 1.1 rocket was in the first months of 2013 when it launched a Canadian weather satellite. Although the Falcon 9 completed the first mission, yet it failed to perform a crucial step, highly important for the success of the SES mission. SpaceX serves both governments and private contractors. Currently, the company is running a NASA contract worth $1.6 billion that involves the supply of twelve cargo resupply space vehicles.