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High winds scupper bumper Space X and Blue Origin rocket launch day

20 December 2018, 11:26 | Ross Houston

SpaceX And Blue Origin To Launch Rockets Within Minutes Of Each Other Tuesday Morning

Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, Boeing and the French may all fly to space today

SpaceX and Blue Origin are headlining a busy day of rocket launches on Tuesday morning, planning to send rockets into space within minutes of each other.

Separately, SpaceX's launch of a much-delayed navigation satellite for the U.S. military was halted on Tuesday, postponing for at least a day the space transportation company's first designated national security mission for the United States. Blue Origin will fly the New Shepard spacecraft out of the company's launch facility in Van Horn, Texas. "Vehicle and payload remain healthy; next launch attempt is tomorrow at 9:07 EST, 14:07 UTC".

In 2017, the Hawthorne, California-based company launched payloads for the Department of Defense that were not designated as a National Security Space missions. As of publication, three of the four rocket launches are canceled. However, a ground infrastructure issue resulted in that mission being delayed as well. Elon Musk's company has Space X launch; the Blue origin is the rocket of Jeff Bezos's company, France's Arianespace and United Launch Alliance which is a joint effort of Boeing Co. and Lockheed Martin Crop.

Vice President Mike Pence was on hand a the nearby Kennedy Space Center to take in the launch and reassured space workers he understood the importance of making sure all systems are "go" before committing a half-billion-dollar satellite to flight.

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The goal is to set up a command to oversee and organize space operations, accelerate technical advances and find more effective ways to defend US assets in space, including the vast constellations of satellites that American forces rely on for navigation, communications and surveillance.

Musk's rocket was due to launch this afternoon at 2.11pm United Kingdom time.

In addition, Arianespace, the European consortium that markets French-built Ariane and Russian-built Soyuz boosters, had to call off a Soyuz launch from French Guiana because of high winds. The Soyuz is due to undock from the space station at 8:42 p.m. EST (0142 December 20 GMT) and land in a remote region of Kazakhstan early tomorrow at 12:03 a.m. EST (0503 GMT).



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