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NASA: Incorrect equipment installation caused failed July rocket launch on Va.'s Eastern Shore

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WALLOPS ISLAND, Virginia — NASA says the incorrect installation of equipment caused the launch of a sounding rocket on Virginia's Eastern Shore to end prematurely.

The agency said Monday that an investigation shows the failure of the July 2014 launch was linked to the installation process for the second stage igniter.

The Terrier-Improved Malemute ended its flight about 19 seconds after it was launched from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility when a flight anomaly was detected.

The rocket flew to an altitude of 27,000 feet and then landed in the Atlantic Ocean about 1 mile downrange. It splashed down in a hazard zone that was cleared before the launch.

There were no injuries or property damage.

NASA has updated its procedures to include instructions for correctly installing the equipment and verifying proper installation.

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