A spaceship carrying cargo bound for the International Space Station is on course despite the disintegration of one of its rocket engines shortly after liftoff on Sunday night. About 79 seconds after the launching, one of the rocket's nine engines was engulfed in a burst of smoke. Pieces of debris fell away, and the onboard computer shut down the bad engine. By design, the other eight engines burned longer to compensate, and the ship reached its correct orbit. In a statement on Monday, Space Exploration Technologies of Hawthorne, Calif., or SpaceX, the company that built and launched the spaceship, said that the engine had lost pressure and that a protective structure around it then ruptured. "We know the engine did not explode because we continued to receive data from it," the company said. The cargo ship is scheduled to arrive at the space station on Wednesday.
This article originally appeared in The New York Times.