Sat, June 05, 2010
Sci-Tech > Science

SpaceX' Falcon 9 rocket lifts off

2010-06-04 19:08:20 GMT2010-06-05 03:08:20 (Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off from launch complex 40 at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Cape Canaveral, Florida June 4, 2010. (Xinhua/AFP Photo)

The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off on its debut launch from launch complex 40 at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Cape Canaveral, Florida June 4, 2010. (Xinhua/AFP Photo)

The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off from launch complex 40 at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Cape Canaveral, Florida June 4, 2010. (Xinhua/AFP Photo)

WASHINGTON, June 4 (Xinhua) -- Privately funded Space Exploration Technologies' Falcon 9 rocket lifted off on Friday afternoon following an initial pad abort because an engine parameter fell out of limits.

The Falcon 9 is carrying a mock-up of the company's spacecraft, named Dragon. The goal of the test flight is to put the capsule into orbit.

NASA plans to use Dragon to fly cargo -- and perhaps astronauts -- to the International Space Station.

NASA is retiring its shuttle fleet after two more flights this year to complete assembly of the station, a $100 billion project of 16 nations. No replacement is planned under the NASA budget proposal for the year beginning Oct. 1, which is pending before Congress.

 

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