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Antares completes static-fire engine test
Posted: Sat, Feb 23, 2013, 11:09 AM ET (1609 GMT)
Antares hot fire test (OSC) the first stage engines of Orbital Sciences Corporation's Antares launch vehicle roared to life on a Virginia launch pad Friday evening for nearly half a minute in a key final test before the rocket's inaugural launch. The two AJ26 engines in the Antares first stage, mounted on its launch pad at the Mid Atlantic Regional Spaceport (MARS) on Wallops Island, Virginia, fired for 29 seconds at 6 pm EST (2300 GMT) Friday to test the performance of the vehicle's systems. Orbital officials said Friday night that the test appeared to be a success. A successful test would clear the way for the first launch of the Antares rocket, most likely in early April. Orbital is developing the Antares to launch its Cygnus spacecraft to transport cargo to the International Space Station and for launching other satellites.
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