SpaceX is at it again.
After scrubbing four launches in the past nine days, the aerospace company is ready to try a fifth attempt at firing its upgraded Falcon 9 rocket into space.
The launch is scheduled to take place on Friday evening out of SpaceX’s launch site at Cape Canaveral, Florida. The launch window opens at 6:35 p.m. ET and ends at 8:06 p.m.
SpaceX’s main mission is to ferry the Boeing-built SES-9 communications satellite to about 22,000 miles above sea level.
Weighing in at approximately 11,750 pounds, the SES-9 satellite will be the largest payload yet that SpaceX has launched to such great heights.
Consequently, this will be one of SpaceX’s most difficult missions to date.
While the main mission is what SpaceX is getting paid for, it’s the secondary goal that makes this launch so special.
The company will attempt to retrieve the first stage of its rocket after launch, by landing it on an ocean platform floating about 400 miles off Florida’s coast.
Because this mission is particularly strenuous on the Falcon 9, SpaceX said it has low hopes for a successful rocket landing.
However, if somehow the rocket succeeds, it will be the second time in history that SpaceX will have landed one of its rockets and the first time a landing will have occurred on its ocean platform.
Live coverage of the event will take place shortly before 6:35 p.m. ET, and you can watch it on YouTube or below. Read on for a complete break down of what will take place with the rocket after lift off.
Here’s a schedule of the sequence of events after take off, courtesy of SpaceX:
- 00:02:36 1st stage engine shutdown/main engine cutoff
- 00:02:40 1st and 2nd stages separate
- 00:02:47 2nd stage engine starts
- 00:03:42 Fairing deployment
- 00:09:01 2nd stage engine cutoff
- 00:27:07 2nd stage engine restarts
- 00:27:55 2nd stage engine cutoff
- 00:31:24 SES-9 satellite deployed
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