SpaceX carries out first commercial flight

SpaceX carries out first commercial flight

That's why the second-ever launch of its Falcon Heavy rocket - and the first to carry a payload for a paying customer - was a key milestone for SpaceX.

The job was to place the six-ton Arabsat-6A satellite into geostationary orbit about 22,500 miles (36,000 kilometers) above the Earth.

The Falcon Heavy was poised to blast off from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida on Wednesday night with a communication satellite.

Eight minutes after takeoff, the spaceflight company landed the Falcon Heavy's side boosters at the company's two landing zones at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. During the rocket's first launch in 2018, the side boosters made it, but the center core missed its drone ship landing.

SpaceX launched its second supersized rocket and for the first time landed all three boosters Thursday, a year after sending up a sports auto on the initial test flight.

SpaceX's mission was to deploy Arabsat-6A, a high-capacity telecommunications satellite that will deliver television, radio, Internet and mobile communications to customers in the Middle East, Africa and Europe, according to a press kit. "Three for three boosters today on Falcon Heavy, what an wonderful accomplishment".

SpaceX has delayed the launch of its newest mega rocket because of dangerously high wind.




SpaceX's Crew Dragon capsule, atop a Falcon 9 rocket, cleared its first unmanned test flight in March ahead of its crewed mission planned for July, while the first unmanned test for Boeing's Starliner capsule is slated for August on ULA's Atlas 5 rocket.

Falcon Heavy is created to launch large commercial payloads into high orbits, take on heavy-duty national security missions and potentially power interplanetary missions as well.

Elon Musk's Tesla roadster launched from the Falcon Heavy rocket in February 2018 with a dummy driver named Starman. As such, this marks the first commercial mission for SpaceX's powerful rocket.

However, with Musk's company intent on driving down launch costs by recycling rocket parts, the boosters for this flight may be re-used for future missions.

Until SpaceX came along, rocket boosters were usually discarded in the ocean after satellite launches. SpaceX is expected to attempt to land all three this week.

This Falcon Heavy was also a next-generation version using the Falcon 9 Block 5 boosters for the first time. Falcon Heavy only has five missions on its manifest so far.

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