Back in June, SpaceX was scheduled to launch Falcon 9 to resupply the International Space Station (ISS). Unfortunately, the Falcon 9 rocket exploded shortly after liftoff. A failed steel strut was blamed to be the cause. Prior to this catastrophe SpaceX had a flawless record of ferrying cargo to and from ISS. They have completed 18 consecutive successful launches in the course of seven years.
“We need to understand exactly what went wrong. Also, to take a thorough review of the data and see if there’s any near misses. Could there have been something else that might even gone wrong and what we need to fix that. Our goal is to have the most reliable rocket ever because, obviously this is gonna be launching astronauts in a few years so it needs to be super reliable.”, says Elon Musk, SpaceX Founder.
The ongoing investigation behind June mishap and rocket upgrades will delay the launch of Falcon 9 and its successor, the Falcon Heavy.
SpaceX will add more safety precaution after the said unfortunate event where it caused NASA at least $110 million in lost equipment. The Dragon capsule was carrying 4,000 pounds of supplies and experiments for ISS crew. “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,” says the President of SpaceX. They will update the rocket’s software to deploy parachutes in case of a failure. The deployment of the parachutes could have saved the payload that was lost during the explosion in June.