The rocket was preparing to launch an Israeli communications satellite, Amos 6, into space on Sept. 3. The satellite, which weighs 5.5 tons and cost more than $100 million to manufacture, was lost in the explosion. Facebook had intended to use some of the satellite’s bandwidth to boost internet connectivity in Africa.

SpaceX has only lost one previous rocket during a flight, when a cargo mission to the International Space Station exploded in June of 2015. The six-month delay while the problem was isolated and fixed cost the company hundreds of millions of dollars in lost revenue. So far in 2016, the company had hit all of its launch goals and set a new annual launch record with a successful flight in mid-August.

The explosion comes at a difficult time for SpaceX. Executives hoped that the Falcon 9 rocket—and its lucrative launch business—would continue operating reliably while the company tested a reusable rocket and its new Falcon Heavy rocket before the end of the year. Meanwhile, SpaceX is racing Boeing to be the first private company to fly humans into space with its Dragon 2 spacecraft, and had expected to begin rigorous testing in early 2017.

A lengthy return-to-flight process would pull engineering and financial resources away from these new projects, and likely mean additional work to convince clients like NASA and satellite-maker SES of the Falcon 9’s reliability.

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