An unmanned NASA-contracted rocket exploded early Tuesday evening along the eastern Virginia coast, causing a huge fireball but no apparent deaths.
"There was failure on launch," NASA spokesman Jay Bolden said. "There was no indicated loss of life."
NASA's mission control is trying to assess what went wrong. The launch director says they must maintain the crash site securely because of security concerns about the equipment on board - saying the rocket had "classified crypto equipment" on board.
According to NASA, the Orbital Sciences Corp.'s Antares rocket and Cygnus cargo spacecraft were set to launch at 6:22 p.m. ET from the Wallops Flight Facility along the Atlantic Ocean. It was set to carry some 5,000 pounds of supplies and experiments to the International Space Station.
In an interview with CNN's Erin Burnett, Scientist Bill Nye weighs in with his thoughts on why the rocket exploded during its launch.