SpaceX launched a Falcon 9 with the satellite on Board
Sep 12 2018
Rain, lightning and thick clouds delayed the launch of a SpaceX Falcon 9 from Florida for over an hour, but Elon Musk's rocket company managed to blast off about 45 minutes after midnight Sunday, sending a heavy communications satellite on its way to orbit.
Monday's mission used the new "Block 5" variant of the Falcon 9 rocket and was the fourth to use this updated model, according to reports from Cape Canaveral. The droneship, which was named in honor of sci-fi author Iain Banks, is a remote landing platform for the rocket. It was also the 60th completed Falcon 9 mission. Operating from 138 degrees East, the satellite's coverage reaches across Asia all the way to Hawaii - in both C and Ku-band - enabling direct connectivity between any point in Asia and the Americas.
SpaceX's Falcon 9 propelled early Monday morning, conveying a ground-breaking broadcast communications satellite into space. "The satellite has a 15-year design life". Built by SSL, a Maxar Technologies Company, Telstar 18 VANTAGE is the third HTS in Telesat's global fleet with capacity that delivers a new level of performance and value for satellite broadband requirements on land, at sea and in the air.
Next up for SpaceX is the launch of Argentina's SAOCOM 1A Earth-observation satellite, slated to take place on October 7 from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.