SpaceX has successfully launched its largest ever satellite into space on Tuesday. The satellite in question was nearly the size of a bus. The satellite launch marked the 50th time SpaceX launched its signature Falcon 9 rocket. The first Falcon 9 rocket was launched back in June 2010.
The two-stage Falcon 9 was launched from Florida’s Cape Canaveral Air Force Station at 12:33 a.m. EST (0533 GMT) on Tuesday morning. Falcon 9 carried a Hispasat 30W-6 satellite. The total weight of the satellite is six metric tons that is almost the size of a bus. As per latest reports, the satellite has successfully been deployed to a Geostationary Transfer Orbit. The satellite will not be recovered in future.
The Hispasat 30W-6 satellite will provide will provide television and broadband coverage to Europe, North Africa, and America. The satellite in question has been designed and constructed by California-based Space Systems/Loral. The satellite’s operator says the probe should last about 15 years in orbit.
SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk took to Twitter to announce the launch of Falcon 9 rocket.
“Falcon 9 flight 50 launches tonight, carrying Hispasat for Spain. At 6 metric tons and almost the size of a city bus, it will be the largest geostationary satellite we’ve ever flown,” the Twitter post read.
Notably, the satellite launch was originally scheduled to take place on Sunday, Feb. 26. But, it was delayed as SpaceX wanted to perform pressurization checks on the Falcon 9’s payload fairing, the nose cone that protects a satellite during liftoff.
SpaceX usually ensures that once a satellite gets released into space, the rocket lands back on earth so it can be reused. However this time, SpaceX confirmed in a press release that it did not attempt to do so due to unfavorable weather conditions.