THE ORBITAL SCIENCES (OSC) Pegasus XL air-launched satellite booster suffered its second failure in two flights on 22 June, when it was destroyed by US Air Force range-safety officers 144km (90 miles) over the Pacific Ocean. Its first flight in June 1994 also ended in failure.

The XL, carrying the US Air Force STEP 3 research satellite, was 2min 30s into its flight, after being dropped from the OSC L-1011 carrier aircraft, when it experienced an in-flight anomaly.

Source: Flight International