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Private Cargo Craft Launches To Space Station

The SpaceX Dragon craft is seen during its maiden voyage to the International Space Station (attached) as it was prepared for its return to Earth in June 2012.
A private company has carried out its second launch of an unmanned cargo ship to the International Space Station.

The reusable Dragon craft blasted off aboard a Falcon rocket from Cape Canaveral in Florida late on October 7.

The ship, carrying 450 kilograms of food and other cargo, is expected to reach the space station on October 9.

It should return to Earth carrying experiments and other material from the space station.

The craft belongs to California-based Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX).

In May, the company successfully launched and docked a Dragon craft on the space station, marking the first time a privately owned capsule had flown to the orbiting laboratory.

SpaceX has a $1.6 billion contract with the U.S. space agency, NASA, to carry out space station supply flights.

Based on reporting by AP and AFP