SpaceX's Falcon 9 is set to launch from the Florida Space Coast, carrying a commercial high-speed broadband satellite for Inmarsat PLC.
The Falcon 9 rocket would be carrying a massive, 13,500-pound satellite from British firm Inmarsat, which is created to deliver high-speed broadband internet to mobile customers. Over the next few years, tech experts expect more reused rockets to launch into space, delivering satellites and resupplying the International Space Station in the process. The satellite was built by Boeing at a cost of around US$220 to US$250 million and will round-out the company's Global Xpress program.
The company will not try to land and recover the spent booster after it delivers its payload - a satellite for an worldwide broadband service provider. Pacific Time from Pad 39A at Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
Its last rocket launch was two weeks ago, when the Falcon 9 successfully landed after sending a military satellite into space. According to the company, such an attempt wasn't planned for Monday's flight "due to mission requirements". One of the Inmarsat-5 satellites, the new sat will provide broadband internet services to airline passengers, maritime crews, and US and global military units. It is hoped that latest satellite will increase the load handling capacity and bring succor if one of the three satellites was having trouble. Recent launches have seen successful returns of the first stage of the rocket. It will carry the Inmarsat 5 F4 communications satellite into orbit. "On ships, our biggest market today is in merchant shipping, and there it will provide a combination of operational services and crew welfare". "In maritime, our system is actually integrated". Powered by a couple of solar "wings", it will operate in the Ka-band and L-band spectrum. It was the sixth of more than 20 missions SpaceX plans to fly this year. Both of these factors combined mean that the Falcon 9 will need to use a whole lot of propellant during launch to get the satellite where it needs to go.
This particular satellite is one of the heaviest SpaceX has put into the sky.
If that blistering pace holds up, SpaceX will have launched nine Falcon 9s in just six months. The pad was heavily damaged in the September 1 pre-flight mishap but it is expected to be back on line shortly. "Safe journey! Thanks for a great launch SpaceX!".