Space Exploration Technologies (Space X) had a successful launch of its newest version of its Falcon 9 rocket series: the Falcon 9 V1.1. The flight which took place from the Vandenberg launch site in California at 1600 GMT on 29 September successfully placed the 375kg Cassiope store/forward communications satellite into a near polar orbit as well as seven nanosatellites of various descriptions.
However, a secondary experiment to try to slow the first stage launch vehicle into the atmosphere did not work correctly. Specicifically, the new first stage with its new arrangement of engines, managed to make one burn of its central engine but then fell into a spin which prematurely cut off the second engine burn. The stage fell into the Pacific.
A further restart test. this time for the second stage Merlin 1D engine also failed after a fault was detected which prevented ignition. Two restarts are to be used in the transfer orbital positioning during the commercial Falcon 9 V1.1 launch of the SES 8 communications satellite.