A serious mishap occurred in Cape Canaveral on Saturday in which the Space X capsule was involved which was to carry the American astronauts to space later this year. Space X was founded by Elon Musk in 2002 with a view to reduce the cost of space transportation. Their main motive was however to colonize Mars.
A Space X spokesman has said that a series of engine tests were conducted by Space X on a test vehicle namely Crew Dragon in Cape Canaveral at the Landing Zone1. He said that the initial tests were completed successfully however the final test led to an anomaly.
The Florida Today had posted a photo on their website in which huge amount of smoke was seen escaping from the test site. This has led to speculations that an explosion could have happened. However neither NASA nor Space X has responded to this. Jim Bridenstine, NASA administrator referred to the incident in his tweets as only an anomaly. He said that they conduct tests to learn from them and make the required adjustments and finally move forward safely.
A test flight was conducted using Crew Dragon in March and it was a successful one. In this an unmanned capsule was sent to dock with the International Space Station for five days before it returned back to earth. The flight was called by NASA as a major milestone and also expressed their hopes that the first manned flight of Crew Dragon would take place before the end of this year.
The capsule consists of eight rocket engines which are used to provide emergency backup. These engines are called as Super Draco. If in the worst case a problem is encountered by the launch vehicle, this Super Draco will help in detaching the capsule thus helping the astronauts to reach back Earth safely. The task of carrying astronauts to and from the International Space Station was handled by Russia since 2011. However NASA is now relying on Space X and also Boeing’s Starliner to perform this task.