Falcon 9 sends cargo toward space station

SpaceX successfully launched a Falcon 9 rocket Monday, beginning a cargo delivery mission to the International Space Station.

Liftoff from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station's pad 40 was on time, precisely at 4:40:38 p.m. EDT.

The Dragon spacecraft is carrying some 5,800 pounds of supplies, spare parts and science experiments to the orbiting outpost, where six-member crew is waiting to berth the Dragon on Wednesday morning and unpack the delivery.

The space shot marked the 52nd Falcon 9 since the vehicle type first flew in 2010.

Monday's launch featured the second flight for both the 14-story first stage and the Dragon capsule. 

SpaceX did not attempt a recovery of the first stage by landing it back at the Cape. Instead, the launch team planned to put the stage through a more extreme re-entry profile to see if the spent booster could handle the extra stress before attempting a "landing" in the Atlantic Ocean.

Meanwhile the next launch from Cape Canaveral is targeted for April 12. A United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket is to carry an Air Force satellite filled with science experiments into Earth orbit. Liftoff will be between 6:00 and 10:00 p.m. EDT.

Next Launch: Atlas 5 on April 12


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