On June 4, 2010, SpaceX’s first Falcon 9 rocket blasted off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida and successfully reached orbit, marking a historic first for the private spaceflight company.
The first Falcon 9 rocket almost didn’t launch that day — the mission came close to the end of its 4-hour launch window because of an issue with the flight termination system. But SpaceX pulled off a successful launch in time, and the company was able to begin fulfilling its $1.6 billion contract with NASA to deliver cargo to the International Space Station.
For its first test flight, the rocket carried a prototype Dragon spacecraft designed for cargo trips to the International Space Station. SpaceX began official NASA delivery flights with Dragon and Falcon 9 at the end of 2010.
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