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CRS-7 Launch Update

Following a nominal liftoff, Falcon 9 experienced a problem shortly before first stage shutdown, resulting in loss of mission. Preliminary analysis suggests the vehicle experienced an overpressure event in the upper stage liquid oxygen tank approximately 139 seconds into flight. Telemetry indicates first stage flight was nominal and that Dragon remained healthy for some period of time following separation.

The flight data is our best resource for determining the root cause of Sunday’s mishap.  Investigation teams are examining over 3,000 channels of telemetry data received from the vehicle, and engineers are parsing data with a hex editor to recover the final milliseconds of the flight. SpaceX is also supporting daily meetings with NASA and the Air Force, with the FAA providing oversight.

The process for determining the root cause of Sunday’s mishap is complex, and there is no one theory yet that is consistent with the data. Our engineering teams are heads down reviewing every available piece of flight data as we work through a thorough fault tree analysis, additional updates will be posted as they become available.