SpaceX to Discuss Recent Falcon 9 Rocket Failure


Space Exploration Technologies Corp. plans to release preliminary results of the investigation into the recent failure of the Falcon 9 rocket on a mission to resupply the International Space Station.

Elon Musk, the billionaire head of SpaceX, plans to hold a 30-minute conference call with reporters on Monday, according to a press advisory from the company.

The explosion of the company’s Falcon 9 on June 28 over Cape Canaveral, Florida -- more than two minutes into flight -- came just a month after it was certified by the U.S. Air Force to carry military satellites.

In the immediate aftermath, Musk was somewhat cryptic in explaining what went wrong. "There was an overpressure event in the upper stage liquid oxygen tank," he tweeted. "Data suggests counterintuitive cause."

Several hours later, he tweeted, "Cause still unknown after several thousand engineering-hours of review. Now parsing data with a hex editor to recover final milliseconds."

SpaceX wants to compete in the military launch market currently dominated by United Launch Alliance LLC, a joint venture between Lockheed Martin Corp. and Boeing Co., which is currently the sole supplier in the Air Force's Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle, or EELV, program.

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