by Staff Writers
Cape Canaveral, Fla. (UPI) Feb 29, 2012
A private spaceship is close to heading to the International Space Station as SpaceX's Dragon capsule and Falcon 9 rocket have been joined, the company says.
The cargo capsule and the launch vehicle have been assembled at Cape Canaveral in Florida, SpaceX Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk reported in a tweet.
The launch, probably in late April, will be an unmanned mission to test the Dragon capsule's ability to rendezvous and dock with the space station, Newscientist.com reported Tuesday.
The space drone is expected to carry some nonessential "demonstration cargo" that will be transferred to the space station and will be loaded with station cargo for return to Earth.
Following last year's retirement of NASA's space shuttles, the main means of ferrying supplies to the orbital outpost has been Russian Progress cargo ships.
If the upcoming SpaceX launch is successful, Dragon would be the first commercial craft to attempt to visit the International Space Station.
Launch Pad at Space-Travel.com
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April new date for SpaceX capsule launch
Cape Canaveral, Fla. (UPI) Feb 10, 2012
Private space company SpaceX says late April is its new target for a launch of its Falcon 9 rocket and a Dragon capsule to the International Space Station. SpaceX has been working with NASA to demonstrate its Dragon capsule is ready to begin regular cargo resupply runs to the ISS. NASA said last week the launch from Cape Canaveral could occur by early April, but SpaceX's latest t ... read more
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