Elon Musk’s SpaceX is all set to blow up a Falcon 9 rocket minutes after its takeoff from Florida on Saturday, according to The Verge.
SpaceX’s unmanned Crew Dragon capsule atop a Falcon 9 rocket will take off from Launch Complex 39A in Florida on Jan.18.
The launch is a part of an in-flight abort test that seeks to check on the spacecraft’s escape capabilities in the event of an emergency.
Within 1 min and 30 seconds after its takeoff, the passenger spacecraft called Crew Dragon will intentionally trigger a launch escape to demonstrate its capability to safely separate from the Falcon 9 rocket in the unlikely event of an in-flight emergency.
NASA and SpaceX are preparing together for the Saturday test, which would be the final milestone before they can put astronauts on the Crew Dragon spacecraft attached to Falcon 9 rocket and fly them to the International Space Station later this year as part of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program.
Why It Matters
SpaceX launched a similar test in April 2019, which failed as its passenger spacecraft Crew Dragon suffered an anomaly and broke down at the company’s Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.
If the Saturday test goes well, SpaceX will come even closer to putting people on its Falcon 9 rocket for the first time in 2019.
Photo Credit: Official SpaceX Site