Watch SpaceX Launch and Land a Falcon 9 Rocket Today
Last month, SpaceX launched a satellite from California and then successfully landed part of the rocket so that it could be reused. On Thursday, the company plans to do the same thing from Florida with a communications satellite for Qatar, the Verge reported.
This mission will involve a reused Falcon 9 booster that launched the Telstar 19 VANTAGE satellite in July, which later landed on a SpaceX drone ship in the Atlantic Ocean. The Falcon 9 was later launched in October from California.
Thursday’s launch will shuttle the Es’hail-2 telecommunications satellite, which will serve the Middle East and North Africa region. It will primarily be used for government and business purposes.
The launch will go into orbit at 22,000 miles, and will be the first satellite at that altitude to connect radio communications from Brazil to India. It would mark the aerospace company’s 18th mission of the year.
Following this mission, SpaceX plans at least another four flights before the end of the year, hoping to top its 2017 record of 18 flights, Ars Technica reported. Its next flight after Thursday’s launch could come as soon as Monday, with the planned launch of smaller satellites for Kazakhstan.
You can watch today’s launch, which will start between 3:46 pm and 5:29 pm ET. The webcast is scheduled to begin 15 minutes before launch.