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SpaceX scrubs Starlink satellite launch Thursday due to ground sensor reading

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A Falcon 9 blasts off on Aug. 30.


SpaceX

The Falcon 9 rocket booster that sent NASA astronauts to the International Space Station in May is set to get recycled again when SpaceX sends 60 more Starlink satellites to orbit atop its column of fire, but it didn’t happen Thursday as planned. 

The launch, originally scheduled for September, has been postponed multiple times due to weather, including on Monday morning when heavy clouds above Florida’s Cape Canaveral prevented launch at the last second. On Thursday, another launch was scrubbed 18 seconds before blastoff due to an aberrant ground sensor reading. A new target launch date has not yet been announced. 

“All in a day’s work for the launch team. They’ll investigate, diagnose probable cause, fix the problem, and get us ready for the next launch attempt,” SpaceX spacecraft operator Siva Bharadvaj tweeted

Elon Musk’s trademark reusable rocket will be making its third flight when it lifts off from Kennedy Space Center. This specific unit sent astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken to orbit in May and then launched a South Korean satellite in July. So far, SpaceX has managed to launch and land the same rocket up to six times

When the launch finally gets off the ground, it should be fairly routine. It will be the 13th Starlink mission so far, and SpaceX is planning on dozens more as it grows its broadband mega-constellation.  

One half of the nose cone, or fairing, atop the rocket has also seen