Falcon 9 Test “Nearly Perfect”

SpaceX says the inaugural flight test of its Falcon 9 rocket on June 4 achieved all of its primary mission objectives and culminated in “a nearly perfect” orbital placement of the rocket’s second stage and mock cargo spacecraft. “This is a major milestone not only for SpaceX, but the increasingly bright future of space flight,” said Elon Musk, SpaceX CEO and chief technology officer. The Falcon 9, powered by a cluster of nine SpaceX-developed Merlin engines, lifted off from Cape Canaveral AFS, Fla., where it was supported by airmen of the 45th Space Wing. SpaceX is under contract with NASA to mature Falcon 9 for use in supplying the International Space Station and eventually carrying astronauts there. Two additional Falcon 9 test launches are planned from Cape Canaveral. (SpaceX release) (Cape Canaveral release)