- A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launched an AMOS-17 communications satellite at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on Tuesday evening.
- The mission comes three years after a launchpad explosion destroyed a different Israeli communications satellite.
- SpaceX livestreamed the launch. The broadcast began 15 minutes before liftoff. The satellite was deployed approximately 31 minutes after the launch.
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SpaceX launched a Falcon 9 rocket carrying Spacecom’s AMOS-17 communications satellite at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on Tuesday. The mission comes nearly three years after a launchpad explosion destroyed a different Israeli communications satellite (Spacecom’s AMOS-6) in September 2016.
The satellite from Tuesday’s launch, which happened at 7:23 p.m. EDT, will provide increased connectivity across Africa by supporting a “growth in a variety of broadcast, broadband, mobility, and data services,” according to a press release.
The satellite was deployed approximately 31 minutes after the launch.
“AMOS-17 will operate in the C, Ku and Ka bands with a digital channelizer to provide fixed high throughput (HTS) C-band coverage to Africa, steerable HTS Ka-band coverage to anywhere from China to Brazil, and extensive Ku-band coverage throughout Africa with additional coverage in Europe, the Middle East, China, and India,” SpaceX said in the press release.
No injuries were reported in the 2016 blast, but it did result in “the loss of the vehicle and its payload,” the SpaceX CEO Elon Musk tweeted shortly after the incident.
For this launch, SpaceX did not try to land or collect its boosters after the launch, CBS News reported.
SpaceX livestreamed the launch, which began 15 minutes before liftoff.
The mission timeline, provided by the press kit with approximated times, went as follows:
COUNTDOWNHour/Minute/Second – Event
- 00:38:00 – SpaceX Launch Director verifies go for propellant load
- 00:35:00 – RP-1 (rocket grade kerosene) loading underway
- 00:35:00 – 1st stage LOX (liquid oxygen) loading underway
- 00:16:00 – 2nd stage LOX loading underway
- 00:07:00 – Falcon 9 begins engine chill prior to launch
- 00:01:00 – Command flight computer to begin final prelaunch checks
- 00:01:00 – Propellant tank pressurization to flight pressure begins
- 00:00:45 – SpaceX Launch Director verifies go for launch
- 00:00:03 – Engine controller commands engine ignition sequence to start
- 00:00:00 – Falcon 9 liftoff
LAUNCH, LANDING, AND SATELLITE DEPLOYMENTHour/Minute/Second – Event
- 00:01:04 – Max Q (moment of peak mechanical stress on the rocket)
- 00:02:45 – 1st stage main engine cutoff (MECO)
- 00:02:48 – 1st and 2nd stages separate
- 00:02:56 – 2nd stage engine starts
- 00:03:36 – Fairing deployment
- 00:08:09 – 2nd stage engine cutoff (SECO-1)
- 00:26:24 – 2nd stage engine restarts
- 00:27:24 – 2nd stage engine cutoff (SECO-2)
- 00:31:55 – AMOS-17 deployment
Watch the broadcast below:
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