Update 3: p.m. EDT: According to NASA, weather has improved to 60 percent for favorable conditions during the launch window, currently scheduled for 3:25 p.m. EDT.
SpaceX hopes poor weather at Cape Canaveral, Fla., does not delay the International Space Station commercial resupply (CRS-3) launch on Friday. The company has rolled out the Dragon spacecraft, sitting atop the Falcon 9 rocket, and NASA as well as SpaceX will provide a live stream of the CRS-3 launch beginning at 2:15 p.m. EDT.
The SpaceX commercial resupply mission launch was delayed on Monday due to a helium leak. "Preflight checks detected that a helium valve in the stage separation pneumatic system was not holding the right pressure. This meant that the stage separation pistons would be reliant on a backup check valve. No issue was detected with the backup valve, and a flight would likely have been successful, but SpaceX policy is not to launch with any known anomalies," SpaceX said in a statement.
Today’s launch is scrubbed due to a Helium leak on Falcon 9. Fix will be implemented by next opp on 4/18. Updates @ http://t.co/NHREgPdLxw
— SpaceX (@SpaceX) April 14, 2014
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SpaceX is hoping the fourth time is a charm on Friday, but the mission is now facing a new challenge that could delay takeoff. The ISS commercial resupply mission was originally scheduled for March 16 but was scrubbed to resolve "open issues." A fire at the Eastern Range, which provides radar support for launches, delayed the launch from March 30 to Monday.
Prior to the Monday's planned launch, a faulty backup computer threatened to delay the launch. NASA approved plans to go ahead with the mission and has planned a spacewalk for April 23 to fix the unresponsive Multiplexer-Demultiplexer (MDM). The spacewalk is contingent on the SpaceX launch, and if there is another delay, NASA will move the spacewalk to Sunday, and the Expedition 39 crew members are planning for either scenario, notes NASA.
F9 & Dragon vertical on the pad for today's launch to the ISS. Weather still a concern--liftoff targeting 3:25pm ET pic.twitter.com/4wRhrtjlbN
— SpaceX (@SpaceX) April 18, 2014
NASA has put Friday's weather at 40 percent for favorable conditions for the beginning of the launch window, currently scheduled for 3:25 p.m. EDT. The chance of rain and thunderstorms could scrub the launch from Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. The CRS-3 mission will carry more than 3,000 pounds of cargo, supplies and science experiments to the International Space Station.
NASA's live stream of the SpaceX launch begins at 2:15 p.m. EDT. SpaceX will also provide a live stream of the Dragon spacecraft takeoff beginning at 2:45 p.m. EDT.