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Orbital engine successfully tested at Stennis

HANCOCK COUNTY — NASA has test fired an engine that will be used for low orbital commercial cargo deliveries.

The test was performed yesterday at the Stennis Space Center in Hancock County.

NASA has partnered with Orbital Sciences Corporation for eight cargo missions to the International Space Station.

The first planned launch is scheduled for early 2012 from the Wallops Flight Facility launch site in Virginia.

The AJ26 engine will power the first stage of Orbital’s Taurus II space launch vehicle.

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden was among the officials viewing the 52-second test firing.

Bolden says the “NASA industry team” to provide low orbit capacity promises to free NASA for exploration.

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