Launch pad dating back to early days of space program demolished

LC-17 in its original Thor configuration – via NSF L2

LC-17 in its original Thor configuration – via NSF L2

Just after sunrise Thursday, the massive towers at Launch Complex 17 came tumbling down, marking the end of an era for at least a small part of United States spaceflight history. Instead, the U.S. Air Force demolished two historic launch towers.

Crews conducted safety checks on the towers at Launch Complex 17 as people gathered to watch the demolition. It toppled over shortly after 7 a.m. It was planned for years while waiting for the funding. "Keep your fingers crossed that I won't mess this up", he told observers, the newspaper Florida Today reported.

"We have launched some super-exciting missions - Mars missions, all sorts of Global Positioning System missions, missions to all sorts of fun planets - so it is definitely a little emotional for me to see", Scott Messer explained to Florida Today.

According to Space Flight Now, the launch pads were built more than six decades ago.

For years the towers were known for their distinctive red colouring until anti-corrosive coatings were applied in the early 90s.

Once the rubble is cleared, the site will be taken over by a private company called moon express, which hopes to launch regular missions to the moon.

Latest News