Launch by SpaceX of mysterious Zuma payload delayed indefinitely

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The expected Falcon 9 launch this past week of the mysterious Zuma government payload, built by Northrop Grumman but linked to no government agency, has been postponed indefinitely because of a fairing issue identified during testing for a different customer.

This delay also suggests that this may be an issue that will delay more than one launch, which could effect SpaceX’s effort to achieve 20 launches in 2017.



  • Michael

    Better to close out the year explaining why they did not quite make 20 rather than try to explain a big ‘oops’ which is all the general public will focus on.

    My only concern is what if any impact this will have on FH as I assume said fairing will be used here also. Of course until SpaceX makes an announcement all we can do is engage is idle speculation.

  • LocalFluff

    Someone speculated cleverly that there exists no Zuma mission. That it instead is an exercise in preparing a short notice launch. That the payload fairing problem was an made up excuse.

  • Anthony Domanico


    That’s a fascinating theory. If true, would this unduly damage SpaceX’s relationship with its customers? As a result of the statement their customers might have concerns regarding the Falcon 9’s fairing reliability. Or would this be too trivial of a concern?

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