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SpaceX COTS launch delayed to late April
Posted: Sat, Feb 11, 2012, 5:17 PM ET (2217 GMT)
SpaceX Dragon illustration (SpaceX) SpaceX has delayed its next demonstration flight of its cargo-carrying Dragon spacecraft until late April to deal with software issues, the company announced this week. TSpaceX previously planned a launch of a Falcon 9 rocket carrying a Dragon spacecraft for no earlier than March 20, after a January postponement of an early February launch, but says it now needs more time to perform software testing of the Dragon before performing a launch. The flight is designed to combine milestones originally planned for two Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) demonstration flights, where the Dragon will first approach the ISS, and, if that is successful, rendezvous and berth with the station. SpaceX is one of two companies that has COTS awards from NASA to develop vehicles that can ferry cargo to the ISS. SpaceX is also pursuing a crewed version of Dragon to transport astronauts to and from the ISS.
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