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Suborbital rocket launch a success
Posted: Mon, Apr 30, 2007, 8:33 AM ET (1233 GMT)
A commercial suborbital sounding rocket successfully launched from New Mexico Saturday, carrying a payload that included the ashes of an astronaut and actor. The UP Aerospace SpaceLoft SL-2 rocket lifted off from the site of Spaceport America in southern New Mexico at 10:58 am EDT (1458 GMT) Saturday, flying a suborbital trajectory that reached a peak altitude of 117 kilometers before landing on the grounds of the White Sands Missile Range about 50 kilometers east of the launch site. The rocket carried a variety of payloads for commercial customers. Among the payloads were cremated remains of 200 people, including Mercury astronaut Gordon Cooper and Star Trek actor James Doohan. The launch came seven months after UP Aerospace's first launch from the site ended in failure when the rocket corkscrewed out of control and fell well short of its planned altitude.
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