This mission, the first for Falcon 9 Block 5, will launch Bangladesh's first communications satellite Bangabandhu-1 into orbit. The backup window for the launch set was set for 4:14 p.m. EDT Friday.
Launch window to start at 4:12 p.m. The Falcon 9 Block 5 meets the standards for crewed space missions and its hardware upgrades dramatically improve upon SpaceX's goal to make rocket reusability and reliability a cost-effective routine.
A last-minute technical glitch prompted SpaceX on Thursday to postpone for at least 24 hours the first commercial flight of its updated Falcon 9 rocket, a launch vehicle tailored for eventual crewed missions into orbit.
The fun doesn't end with takeoff.
The first stage will coast upward from its shutdown point before beginning its descent toward the Of Course I Still Love You drone ship in the Atlantic Ocean. SpaceX holds a multibillion-dollar deal with the space agency to fly astronauts to and from the International Space Station, and the company will use the Falcon 9 Block 5 and its Dragon capsule to perform these missions. The biggest switch involves the material used for the grid fins, which guides the first stage during its descent to the landing pad on the SpaceX droneship.
"With this historical first satellite, Bangladesh inhabitants will have access to a wide range of broadcast and communications services", Thales Alenia Space, the company that designed and built the satellite, said in a statement.
Block 5 represents the final suite of upgrades to its workhorse launch system that CEO Elon Musk says is created to be flown up to 100 times. There is a 20 percent chance that bad weather will scotch the attempt, however.
Falcon 9's main aim is to propel the first high-orbit communications satellite for Bangladesh, called Bangabandhu Satellite-1.
Bangladesh delegation was to hold a press conference at a hotel in NY on Friday around 11am (local time), after the launching of the satellite.
It is understood the launch has been rescheduled for around the same time it was meant to take place today.
F9 B1046 offers a glimpse of its Block 5 Merlins, octaweb, and heat shielding.
Even the landing legs have been redesigned to allow engineers to retract them after touchdown. "We tried to summarize all of these lessons learned into a booster that then is able to fly and be recovered and fly again multiple times without a lot of refurbishment".