A SpaceX capsule designed to ferry NASA astronauts to the International Space Station Endured a failure during an engine test Saturday Day that sent a billowing plume of smoke into the Atmosphere over Cape Canaveral, Florida.
No one was injured, and it was not clear what caused the crash or how serious it was. In a statement, the business said the failure occurred as it was running”a set of engine tests” The first evaluations were”completed successfully, but the last test resulted in an anomaly on the test rack.”
The failure comes at a critical period for the California-based company based by Elon Musk. It expects to fly astronauts to the space station as soon as this year as part of NASA’s “commercial crew program.” And it comes forward of evaluations of this capsule’s escape method, which was made to jettison the spacecraft from the rocket in the event of an emergency. Now both of those could be delayed as the company investigates what went wrong.
The engines that failed Saturday are part of the abort system. Reports from local media outlets revealed a large reddish cloud of smoke which, according to Florida Today,”could be seen for miles.”
“Ensuring that our systems meet rigorous security standards and detecting anomalies similar to this prior to flight are the chief reasons why we examine,” SpaceX said in its statement. “Our teams are investigating and working closely together with our NASA partners”
In a statement on Twitter, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine stated,”This is the reason why we test. We will learn, make the necessary alterations and safely move forward with our commercial crew program.”
Earlier this year, SpaceX ran a prosperous uncrewed test flight of its spacecraft, called Crew Dragon, which flew to the space station, docked and returned home.