JUL 25, 2018 04:31 PM PDT

SpaceX Flies Ten More Satellites Into Space for Iridium

WRITTEN BY: Anthony Bouchard

On Wednesday, SpaceX completed its second Falcon 9 rocket launch of the week. Stowed away inside the rocket’s massive cargo hold were a total of ten communications satellites belonging to Iridium, which is one of SpaceX’s most frequent and highest-paying customers.

A look at SpaceX's upright Falcon 9 rocket just before launch on Wednesday.

Image Credit: SpaceX/Twitter

SpaceX commanded all nine of the Falcon 9 rocket’s Merlin engines to ignite at California’s Vandenberg Air Force Base at 7:39 A.M. Eastern time. The launch transpired at the coast opposite of where a Falcon 9 rocket ferried a 15,500-pound communications satellite into space on Sunday.

Despite the foggy conditions that made viewing the launch less than ideal for local spectators, the rocket experienced virtually no trouble as it completed its primary mission.

Soon after the launch, the rocket’s first stage fell back to Earth and landed upright on a drone ship in the Pacific Ocean. A while later, the precious cargo the rocket was carrying made it to outer space and continued onward until reaching an ideal Earth-orbiting altitude.

As always, SpaceX live-streamed the launch from its website for those interested. The full webcast is now available to watch on YouTube:

Related: Watch SpaceX launch its final 'Block 4' Falcon 9 rocket

The ten communications satellites that went into space Wednesday morning bring Iridium’s total NEXT satellite count to 65. The firm wants to have 75 NEXT satellites in space, and with that in mind, one final launch in the future could realize this goal.

Worthy of note, the Falcon 9 rocket used during Wednesday’s launch was of the ‘Block 5’ variety. SpaceX says its Block 5 line of Falcon 9 rockets offer greater reusability than the previous model and that this makes refurbishing them more feasible.

Source: SpaceX

About the Author
  • Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
You May Also Like
DEC 10, 2019
Space & Astronomy
DEC 10, 2019
Here's Why Hubble Can't Photograph Pluto Clearly
NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope is responsible for capturing some of the most detailed images of distant galaxies, but it isn’t particularly usef...
DEC 10, 2019
Space & Astronomy
DEC 10, 2019
What We've Learned About Mars From India's Mangalyaan Mission
Back in 2013, the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) launched a Mars-orbiting spacecraft dubbed the Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM), also known as Mangal...
DEC 10, 2019
Space & Astronomy
DEC 10, 2019
How is NASA's InSight Mission on Mars Doing?
NASA’s InSight mission officially landed on Mars last November, and perhaps unsurprisingly, the media hyped this mission’s purpose on the red p...
DEC 10, 2019
Space & Astronomy
DEC 10, 2019
All About NASA's Upcoming Plan to Explore Europa
Planetary scientists have been in search of potentially habitable worlds for years, and perhaps one of the most promising places we have yet to explore in...
DEC 10, 2019
Space & Astronomy
DEC 10, 2019
Say Hello to the Largest Star Ever Discovered
There are so many stars in the modern universe that we couldn’t ever hope to count them all. Many are so distant from us that we can’t even see...
DEC 10, 2019
Space & Astronomy
DEC 10, 2019
Jupiter's Great Red Spot is as Powerful as it is Captivating
Jupiter is the largest known planet in our solar system, but even that isn’t the gas giant’s most discernible feature – that title belong...
Loading Comments...