SpaceX rocket and Israeli satellite lost in blast

Image: Smoke from launch pad
Video from Kennedy Space Center shows smoke rising from a SpaceX launch pad blast. (Credit: NASA)

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and a telecommunications satellite supported by Facebook were destroyed today in a launch-pad explosion at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, during preparations for a pre-launch static fire test.

No injuries were reported.

The explosion occurred at 9:07 a.m. ET (6:07 a.m. PT), the Air Force’s 45th Space Wing said in a tweet. USLaunchReport captured the scene in a dramatic video that showed the Falcon 9’s upper stage exploding. A huge fireball engulfed Launch Complex 40, sending up a pillar of black smoke.

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By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributing editor at GeekWire, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing. Check out "About Alan Boyle" for more fun facts.

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