CAPE CANAVERAL, Florida -- SpaceX successfully launched a Falcon 9 rocket with its Dragon spacecraft 3:44 a.m. EDT this morning from the Space Launch Complex-40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station just east of Kennedy Space Center in Florida for the second SpaceX demonstration launch for NASA's Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS).
SpaceX spokesperson Kirstin Brost Grantham said in an email that the SpaceX Dragon capsule successfully separated from the Falcon 9 rocket and that the solar arrays have been deployed.
Sending a spacecraft to the International Space Station has only ever been accomplished by four entities – the United States, Russia, Japan and the European Union. This historic launch marks the first time a private company has sent a spacecraft to the ISS.
According to the latest Falcon 9 launch weather prediction issued by the U.S. Air Force 45th Weather Squadron at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, there was a 90% chance of favorable weather for the SpaceX launch this morning.
IMAGE AND VIDEO CREDIT: NASA