SpaceX's latest mission didn't last long – its Falcon 9 rocket exploded just a few minutes after being launched from a base in Florida this morning.
The company, which was set up by entrepreneur Elon Musk in 2002, said the vehicle experienced an “anomaly” on ascent.
It is not yet clear what went wrong, but SpaceX added that it would provide more details as soon as possible. Nasa is also investigating the cause.
The vehicle experienced an anomaly on ascent. Team is investigating. Updates to come.— SpaceX (@SpaceX) June 28, 2015
The Falcon 9 rocket was heading for the International Space Station (ISS), where it was due to deliver around 1,800kg of food, supplies and equipment. There was also a docking ring on board, which would would have prepared the space station to receive new commercial spacecraft.
Three men are currently living at the ISS: American astronaut Scott Kelly and two Russian cosmonauts Mikhail Kornienko and Gennady Padalka. They have around four months worth of food and supplies left, so there is no immediate problem resulting from the accident.
In the last 13 years, SpaceX has grown from a small startup to an established company with almost 4,000 employees. It has great ambitions for the future – ultimately, it hopes to enable humans to migrate to other planets.
This is what happened the last time a Falcon 9 rocket was launched from the US: