NASA, SpaceX standing down from Falcon 9 space launch due to thruster issues

Astronauts conducting eye exams and working on spacesuits, according to NASA

The SpaceX Dragon capsule being used for the Axiom AX-1 mission rolls out to the launch pad atop a Falcon 9 rocket. (SpaceX, SpaceX)

BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. – NASA announced Monday that both the agency and SpaceX will be standing down from this week’s Falcon 9 launch of a cargo mission to the International Space Station due to an issue with the thrusters.

According to NASA, elevated vapor readings of mono-methyl hydrazine — MMH — were found in the Draco thruster propulsion system.

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Once the source of the readings is found, NASA said, the agency will determine a new target launch date.

In the meantime, flight engineers are training on computers to get ready for the Dragon cargo spacecraft’s automated arrival and docking when it is ultimately launched to the space station, NASA said.

NASA also stated that astronauts received eye exams aboard the space station, using medical imagery gear and optical coherence tomography techniques.

According to the agency, Flight Engineers Kjell Lindgren and Jessica Watkins also serviced spacesuits, collecting water samples and cleaning water lines before installing new parts.


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