SpaceX rocket blasts off for space station cargo run
The 157-foot (48-meter) tall Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon cargo ship lifted off at 10:10 a.m. EST (1510 GMT) from the company's leased launch pad at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, just south of NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
"Beautiful liftoff. Probably seen more than 75 in my life, but it just never gets old," NASA's Associate Administrator Lori Garver posted on Twitter as the rocket punched through partly cloudy skies and headed toward orbit.
The Dragon capsule, which carries more than 2,300 pounds (1,043 kg) of science equipment, spare parts, food and supplies, is scheduled to reach the station Saturday morning.
Engineers were assessing a problem with the capsule at the time that its solar wing panels were scheduled to be deployed.
"It appears that although it achieved Earth orbit, Dragon is experiencing some kind of problem right now," John Insprucker, a Falcon 9 manager with Space Exploration Technologies, or SpaceX, said on a webcast.
He said that managers are studying the problem and may be able to provide details later in the day.
The problem occurred about 11 minutes after liftoff, when the capsule's solar wings were to unfurl. Onboard cameras did not show that happening. SpaceX's webcast then cut the live feed from orbit.
SpaceX founder Elon Musk later said on his Twitter feed that the problem was with the Dragon's thruster pods.
"System inhibiting three of four
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