The launch of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying a SES-12 telecom satellite is scheduled to liftoff on Monday, June 4, 2018 from Space Launch Complex 40 at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.
SES-12 eventually will be positioned at 95 degrees east longitude, co-located with the SES-8 relay station - the first SES satellite launched by SpaceX.
SpaceX readied a Falcon 9 rocket for launch early Monday to boost a powerful SES communications satellite into orbit, providing direct-to-home video, high-speed data relay, broadband, maritime and aircraft connectivity across the Asia-Pacific region, Australia and the Middle East.
The launch was moved from Friday to allow SpaceX to run additional tests on Falcon 9's second stage.
"Once operational Crew Dragon missions are under way for NASA, SpaceX will launch the private mission on a journey to circumnavigate the Moon and return to Earth", SpaceX said in a statement. The company provides satellite communications services to broadcasters, content and internet service providers, mobile and fixed network operators, governments and institutions.
Racing away to the east, the booster put on a brilliant light show as it powered out of the dense lower atmosphere, smoothly accelerating as it consumed its load of liquid oxygen and kerosene rocket fuel.
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"The launch vehicle is expendable", said Martin Halliwell, chief technical officer for SES. The spent stage then fell away and the single engine powering the second stage took over to continue the trip to space.
SpaceX estimates the Block 5's improved features will reduce launch costs from £45 million ($60 million) to £37 million ($50 million). The 4 hours launch window was opened at near about 12:29 a.m. ET.
Standing some 27 feet tall and weighing almost 12,000 pounds, Halliwell joked that the spacecraft built in France by Airbus Defense and Space barely fit inside the Falcon 9 rocket's nose cone, or payload fairing.
Block 5 Falcon 9 is said to be the "final iteration" of the reusable rocket, with potential to handle far more launches than its predecessor, and could one day be used to carry astronauts to space.
No attempt was made to land the booster after its second flight.