Dragon flight (CRS-3) delayed

Some sort of contamination was found in the Dragon’s unpressurized “trunk” section, where two electrically powered payloads have been mounted for the first time in the Dragon’s short history.  Both payloads (a high-definition camera and a laser communication experiment) are slated to be extracted from Dragon by the SSRMS “Big Arm” and mounted to the station exterior, but engineers are concerned the contamination discovered in the trunk could outgas in space, contaminating the payloads.  SpaceX delayed the flight to permit a cleanup operation.  Since Soyuz TMA-12M is scheduled to launch March 25 and a buffer is required on either side of that date to allow proper clearance at station, Dragon must now wait until NET March 30.



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