SpaceX announced in an e-mail Wednesday that it will not be
attempting a demo flight of its Dragon cargo module atop a Falcon 9
booster in October. The company said the targeted launch date
request is now November 8th or 9th.
SpaceX launched the first Falcon 9 rocket into orbit earlier
this year. The next flight was to carry a demonstration Dragon
module and place it into orbit, where it would send telemetry back
to NASA, as well as receive commands, maneuver, and then re-enter
the earth's atmosphere, according to a report in Space News. The
Falcon 9 launch was so successful that SpaceX said at the time it
hoped to be carrying cargo to ISS by the end of the year.
SpaceX was the first COTS partner selected by NASA in 2006. The
COTS commercial partners are responsible for the overall design,
development, manufacturing, testing, and operation of their COTS
system. In order to receive NASA financial assistance, the COTS
partners must conduct the COTS Demonstrations according to the
terms and conditions in their Space Act Agreements and consistent
with the COTS ISS Service Requirements Document (ISRD), the COTS
Human Rating Plan, and the ISS to COTS Interface Requirements
NASA's Commercial Crew and Cargo Program Office (C3PO) was
created to extend human presence in space by enabling an expanding
and robust U.S. commercial space transportation industry.