SpaceX aborted its latest rocket launch after its onboard computers detected an issue with the engine power seconds before take-off. SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket was to vault 60 more Starlink internet satellites into earth’s orbit after launching from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, Florida.
The rocket ran down its countdown sequence before the launch was called off. After counting down to zero, “ignition” and “liftoff” sequences were initiated but there was no liftoff. The announcer then put an end to the sequence by saying “Disregard, we have an abort.”
SpaceX provided updates on the Falcon 9 launch via its twitter handle:
Standing down today; standard auto-abort triggered due to out of family data during engine power check. Will announce next launch date opportunity once confirmed on the Range
— SpaceX (@SpaceX) March 15, 2020
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A supply chain supervisor at SpaceX, Michael Andre said on the company’s webcast that the hold was triggered by computers. The computers constantly survey the rocket’s data before liftoff and can automatically stop the engine if it detects any abnormal readings. He also said overall, the rocket was in good health.
“We had a condition regarding engine power that caused us to abort today’s launch,” Andrews, said during launch commentary.
“Prior to that, the countdown was proceeding normally. Keep in mind, the purpose of the countdown is to help us catch potential issues prior to flight. There are a thousand ways a launch can go wrong, but only one way the launch can go right. Given that, we are overly cautious on the ground, and if the team sees anything that looks even slightly off, we’ll stop the countdown,” He added.
SpaceX plans to beam cheap and high-speed broadband across the globe with thousands of tiny satellites. CEO, Elon Musk says he is hoping to land his first Starlink customers in 2020. The broadband service will first launch in the US and Canada.
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