The quest for global satellite internet access is going to have to wait a little longer.
SpaceX delayed the launch of its next Falcon 9 rocket, to Wednesday at the earliest.
The rocket, which was scheduled to launch on Sunday, has been delayed to allow for additional checks. It will be the second rocket SpaceX has launched this month, following the Falcon Heavy at the start of the month.
Once the rocket does lift off, though, it will be the first to carry Starlink broadband satellites and the Paz radar-imaging satellite. These satellites, SpaceX hopes, will pave the way for the technology the company intends to use to eventually provide high-speed Internet access to the world, via thousands of small satellites.
With SpaceX hoping to make its rockets completely reusable, the company has been upgrading its payload fairings—the nose cone at the top of the rocket—as part of these efforts. Ahead of this week’s planned launch, the team decided more time was needed to check the upgraded payload fairing, leading to their decision to delay. According to Space, developing reusable and recoverable payload fairings would provide significant savings to SpaceX—each one costs about $5 million.