[amsat-bb] SpaceX statement on flight 3 anomaly

Lee McLamb ku4os at cfl.rr.com
Sat Aug 2 22:36:26 PDT 2008

Plan Going Forward

It was obviously a big disappointment not to reach orbit on this flight 
[Falcon 1, Flight 3].  On the plus side, the flight of our first stage, with 
the new Merlin 1C engine that will be used in Falcon 9, was picture perfect.  
Unfortunately, a problem occurred with stage separation, causing the stages 
to be held together.  This is under investigation and I will send out a note 
as soon as we understand exactly what happened. 

The most important message I’d like to send right now is that SpaceX will not 
skip a beat in execution going forward.  We have flight four of Falcon 1 
almost ready for flight and flight five right behind that.  I have also given 
the go ahead to begin fabrication of flight six.  Falcon 9 development will 
also continue unabated, taking into account the lessons learned with Falcon 
1.  We have made great progress this past week with the successful nine 
engine firing.

As a precautionary measure to guard against the possibility of flight 3 not 
reaching orbit, SpaceX recently accepted a significant investment.  Combined 
with our existing cash reserves, that ensures we will have more than 
sufficient funding on hand to continue launching Falcon 1 and develop Falcon 
9 and Dragon.  There should be absolutely zero question that SpaceX will 
prevail in reaching orbit and demonstrating reliable space transport.  For my 
part, I will never give up and I mean never. 

Thanks for your hard work and now on to flight four.


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