SpaceX will deliver a communications satellite created to broadcast television over the United States of America and parts of the Caribbean this evening.
It is a "dual-mission" satellite for the US-based operator EchoStar and Luxembourg-based operator SES. The rocket used on this flight included a first stage that was previously flown for a Space Station resupply mission in February, and then recovered and refurbished by SpaceX.
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The launch carried a high-powered communications satellite for customers EchoStar Corp. and SES SA to geostationary transfer orbit. Eastern Daylight Time on Wednesday, October 11, 2017, from Launch Complex 39A at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. About seven minutes after launch, the tall portion of the Falcon 9, known as the first stage, returned to Earth for an upright landing. Another launch helped loft the BulgariaSat-1 spacecraft on June 23. The back-to-back launches are a testament to the rapid pace that SpaceX has established. This means that Falcon 9's first stage rocket will becoming down faster with less fuel to slow its descent than missions to lower orbits.
SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has said he wants to make new boosters a thing of the past, as his company begins using more and more recycled hardware. It was the "third successful mission with a flight-proven orbital class rocket", said SpaceX on Twitter.
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The SpaceX rocket launched at 5:37 a.m., Pacific time, Monday from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, the company said in a statement. Its payload was a communications satellite capable of broadcasting on both the Ku-band for client EchoStar, and the C-Band fro SES. The company has the option to renew annually after the the 10-year lease has elapsed.
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