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SpaceX gearing up for 13 rocket launches this year

SpaceX gearing up for 13 rocket launches this year

To meet its target of 13 launches and two flights this year, Space exploration Technologies is increasing the production of engines that control its Falcon 9 rocket.

Started by entrepreneur Elon Musk, SpaceX has started a recruitment drive to employ engineers and workers from other sectors like the automotive industry and the military to help lift production.

SpaceX president Gwynne Shotwell told that the company has a target to produce at least 180 engines, with incrementing that number to 240 next year. The company aims to produce 400 engines by 2017. Last year, The Company could not keep up with the targets due to numerous reasons.

SpaceX will be certified to launch military and Intelligence satellites using Falcon 9 rockets by June. At present, those satellites can be propelled by ULA only. ULA is a joint venture of US two largest arms makers Lockheed Martin Corp and Boeing Co.

In recent years, SpaceX has caused a stir in the satellite industry by getting launch contracts from commercial firms, as well as NASA. This put a burden on ULA to reduce its costs. But, whether SpaceX will be able to meet the increasing demand, will be known over course of time.

SpaceX is preparing for its fourth launch on March 21.It also has cargo resupply mission for NASA in April.

Shotwell said the company also plans to test its 27- engine Falcon Heavy Rocket at a revamped space shuttle launch pad at Kennedy Space Center in Florida.


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