Published: Wed, March 07, 2018
Global | By Enrique Rogers

SpaceX launches Falcon 9 for the 50th time

SpaceX launches Falcon 9 for the 50th time

The launch, which will come from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, will mark SpaceX's first mission since its historic Falcon Heavy rocket launch February 6.

SpaceX launches a Falcon 9 rocket from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida, on July 14, 2014.

30W-6 is a three-booster rocket that will deliver broadcast services for broadband, corporate networks, television, telephony, landlines, mobile telephones and video conferencing and other telecommunications applications.

The satellite weighed 6 metric tonnes and was the biggest-ever satellite carried by SpaceX.

The late-night launch will be broadcast live on SpaceX's website.

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There were no plans Monday afternoon to try and recover the first stage of the rocket due to poor weather conditions expected in the Atlantic Ocean, according to a release from SpaceX. This is also likely to be followed by another Falcon 9 launch in early to mid-April carrying Bangladesh's first communications satellite. "Just ten years ago, we couldn't even reach orbit with little Falcon 1". Deploying a payload to geostationary orbit requires much more fuel than low-Earth orbit, and the Hispasat 30W-6 weighs in at more than 6,000 kilograms (13,227 pounds).

That's up from 18 missions in 2017. However, it looks like SpaceX will not attempt one of its signature rocket landings at sea after takeoff.

Sarah Lewin, associate editor at Space.com, breaks down SpaceX's landmark 50th Falcon 9 launch.

Now that the Hispasat launch is behind SpaceX, the company can prepare for an extremely busy March, and spring schedule in general.

The Falcon 9 first flew in 2010, and since then, has become the California-based company's workhorse for sending supplies to the International Space Station, launching commercial satellites and secretive government payloads.

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