Published: Wed, June 06, 2018
Science | By Dan Gutierrez

OTD in Space - June 4: Falcon 9 Rocket Reaches Orbit

OTD in Space - June 4: Falcon 9 Rocket Reaches Orbit

SpaceX launched a satellite for longtime customer SES SA of Luxembourg early Monday, marking the company's 11th mission of the year.

It fired off from Florida's Cape Canaveral Air Force Station at 5:45am BST (00:45 ET) and successfully deployed the SES-12 satellite 32 minutes after lift-off.

Musk also wants to reuse the two-stage Falcon 9's upper stage and its payload fairing - the nose cone that protects satellites during launch. According to, Musk and his company are trying to develop rockets and spacecraft that can be quickly reused in an attempt to lower the cost of space exploration. The window to launch the rocket opens at 12:29 a.m. Monday and last for four hours.

The new platform will join SES-8 at 95 degrees East and will replace and augment the services now being provided on SES' NSS-6 satellite.

LeBron questioned whether Cavaliers would make playoffs this year
The NBA Finals begin Thursday at either Houston or Golden State. "The way he plays the game, his demeanor, where he comes from". That's despite his Cavs team undergoing several roster changes throughout the season and incurring injuries along the way.

"This is an incredibly flexible satellite that we're putting into our fleet", said John-Paul Hemingway, CEO of SES Networks. SpaceX is switching to a new and improved line of boosters, and so made no effort to recover this one. Instead, the satellite will have an electric drive that uses xenon gas pulses to slowly circulate its orbit around the equator for a period of months. The company is expecting both the US and Europe to turn to the Falcon Heavy in the next couple of years for certain satellite launches.

SES-12 is the 13th satellite built by Airbus for SES and the third all-electric satellite built by Airbus in orbit. SES-12 is designed for an operational life of some 15 years.

The 5.4-ton (4,900kg/10,800lb) spacecraft, dubbed SES-12, will beam TV, data, and other communications services across the Asia-Pacific region and the Middle East. "And satellite is one of the (ways) - and sometimes the only way - to those markets".

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