The Falcon 9 - Amos-6 - mission in 3 September 2016 failed before launch - the rocket exploded during the static fire test.

Some lists contain such missions but others don't - like for example Jonathan C. McDowell's JSR launch database.

What other such missions failed before launch? I mean catastrophic failures that end in the loss of the rocket

The list include:

  • after ignition but before release of clamps
  • test ignition a day or two or more before launch
  • during count-down count
  • $\begingroup$ Does this include catastrophic failures caused by a rocket mishap only? $\endgroup$
    – asdfex
    Jan 22, 2021 at 8:29
  • $\begingroup$ You can probably begin by reading en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_missions_to_the_Moon and en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_missions_to_Mars which include quite a lot of failures. Also en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Lists_of_space_missions. $\endgroup$
    – Kozuch
    Jan 22, 2021 at 9:22
  • $\begingroup$ Failures during countdown and test ignition failures do not really need to mean final mission failures - the mission might have later started without problems. $\endgroup$
    – Kozuch
    Jan 22, 2021 at 9:24
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    $\begingroup$ It seems strange to equate failure of the mission and loss of the rocket. SpaceX offered the choice to install the payload either before or after the static fire. Spacecom chose to have Amos-6 put on the rocket before the static fire. They could have made a different choice, which would have meant a catastrophic failure that ends in the loss of the rocket, but not a failure of the mission. $\endgroup$ Jan 23, 2021 at 2:42
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    $\begingroup$ If the mission fails before launch that means the rocket is lost. If the rocket is not lost then it can launch. If there is a launch then there is no failure before launch. $\endgroup$
    – Joe Jobs
    Jan 23, 2021 at 2:59

1 Answer 1


The Soyuz_7K-OK_No.1 comes to mind. After an aborted launch, the launch escape system was triggered by the rotation of the earth. It fire approx. 27 minutes after the scrapped launch.

Here's Scott Manley telling the story of this particular accident.


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