SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carries satellite into orbit

SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carries satellite into orbit

The Falcon 9 rocket soared off Launch Complex 40 at 12:45 a.m.; the launch was delayed 16 minutes because of gusty winds.

Engineers and technicians with SpaceX are presently assessing the health and resiliency of that booster to ensure that these Block 5 variants can be flown multiple times without significant refurbishment.

Air Force and weather officials predict a 70 percent chance of good launch weather. The first stage came back to Earth for a pinpoint landing during its first flight, but it did not repeat that feat today; the booster is part of the now-discontinued "Block 4" Falcon 9 build, and SpaceX let the sea claim it.

SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket is ready to liftoff early Monday morning from Cape Canaveral carrying the SES 12 satellite.


Elon Musk's SpaceX announced back in February a year ago that, in late 2018, it would fly two paying space tourists around the Moon and back to Earth.

The rocket will carry the SES-12 satellite to orbit for the Luxembourg-based telecom company SES. The original plan was for SpaceX's Falcon Heavy rocket to power the mission, but Musk said a few months ago that the company would probably use its "Big F-ing Rocket" (BFR) instead.

SES-12 is capable of broadcasting and providing broadband data services focused on the high-growth Asia-Pacific region.

Musk also wants to reuse the two-stage Falon 9's upper stage and its payload fairing - the nose cone that protects satellites during launch.

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