After Rocket Explosion, Orbital Agrees to Insure Launch Pad - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

After Rocket Explosion, Orbital Agrees to Insure Launch Pad

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NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - Orbital Sciences has agreed to insure a state-owned launch pad in Virginia following a rocket explosion that damaged the Wallops Island facility.

An unmanned commercial supply rocket bound for the International Space Station exploded moments after liftoff on Oct. 28. Orbital has previously said preliminary investigation results point to a failure in one of the two main engines involved in the first stage of launch. The Virginia Commercial Space Flight Authority owns and operates the launch pad and says severe damage was spared, but repairs are necessary.

On Thursday, Orbital said it would insure the launch pad for future launches.

Virginia partnered with Orbital in 2008 to make improvements to the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport. State bonds financed a large portion of the launch pad's nearly $150 million cost.

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