SpaceX delays rocket launch from Vandenberg


The company tweeted that it's "working toward a backup launch opportunity on December 3", after it conducted additional tests.

This is the third time the launch has been postponed. The current record is held by an Indian rocket that launched 104 small satellites earlier this year.

"Standing down from tomorrow's launch attempt of Spaceflight SSO-A: SmallSat Express to conduct additional inspections of the second stage".

Before landing, however, the booster helped deliver 64 small satellites to orbit for a variety of companies.

The Hawthorne-based SpaceX has worked for years to ideal the reuse of its rockets to slash the cost of space missions, landing the first stage of the rockets either back on land near the original launch site or on barges floating in the ocean.

Monday's flight got underway at 10:32 a.m. PST (GMT-8; 1:32 p.m. EST) when the Falcon 9's nine Merlin 1C first stage engines ignited with a rush of flame and steaming exhaust, pushing the slender 130-foot-tall rocket away from pad 4-East at Vandenberg.

Elon Musk's company launched a rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base on Monday after a series of delays triggered by bad weather and last-minute inspections for the rocket.

After the launch, the Falcon 9's first-stage booster returned to earth as planned, landing on a ship off the coast of southern California, according to a live video of the flight.

- SpaceX successfully deployed 64 satellites on Monday from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California to the cheers of those back on the ground throughout the world.

Organized by Spaceflight Industries, the satellites aboard the rocket would come from 34 organizations and be released into a "sun-synchronous low Earth orbit".

This mission also gave ride-sharing a new meaning. It has often re-used the first stages of Falcon 9 rockets, but Monday's launch was the first time the same rocket was used a third time.

One atypical payload onboard was Enoch, a cubesat from the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and artist Tavares Strachan that is carrying the ashes of Robert Henry Lawrence Jr., the first African American astronaut selected for a national space program.