Advanced Television

SpaceX suffers further delays

September 1, 2015

By Chris Forrester

Gwynne Shotwell, president of rocket launch company SpaceX, says the rocket will not be returning to work anytime soon. A SpaceX Falcon-9 rocket suffered a catastrophic failure when a metal strut fractured on June 28th.

“We’re taking more time than we originally envisioned, but I don’t think any one of our customers wants us to race to the cliff and fail again,” Shotwell said at a discussion at the AIAA Space 2015 conference in Pasadena, California, on August 31st.

She told delegates that SpaceX is a couple of months away from its next flight.

Previously, SpaceX founder Elon Musk had expressed the wish that the rockets would return to work in September.

SpaceX has a very strong manifest of launches in a 60 satellite queue of customers.

One client is SES which has already suffered delays to its much-needed SES-9 satellite which now seems unlikely to see a launch before November. SES’s dilemma is further compounded by the fact that SES-9 is an all-electric satellite which uses its own on-board electric thrusters to lift it to its final geostationary orbit. This process takes about 6 months, which means that SES-9 is unlikely to make any financial contributions before the middle of 2016.

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