SpaceX successfully launched its seventh space mission of the year this morning (June 12). It delivered three satellites into orbit for Canada.
Despite the heavy fog, SpaceX successfully launched and deployed all three RADARSAT spacecraft into orbit. The private agency also nailed the landing of Falcon 9.
The trio of satellites is part of the RADARSAT Constellation developed by the Canadian Space Agency.
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The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifted off from Vandenberg Air Force Base at 10:17 a.m. EDT (1417 GMT; 7:17 a.m. local California time). The agency released the three satellites in orbit about an hour after liftoff.
About 8 minutes after liftoff, the Falcon 9’s first stage successfully landed in the center of LZ-4, SpaceX’s landing pad at Vandenberg. This marked the agency’s 41st booster recovery.
The first stage was the same booster that ferried SpaceX’s Crew Dragon capsule to the International Space Station (ISS) in March of this year.
Today’s flight marked the 41st landing for SpaceX out of 72 total launches for the company. Only 15 of those touchdowns have been on land. And this is only the second time a rocket has landed on solid ground in California; SpaceX’s other ground landings have occurred on Florida’s Space Coast, where the company has a pair of launch and landing pads.
Watch the event below:
SpaceX will launch another Falcon Heavy on June 24. It will be its third flight and its first for the US Air Force. On board, it’ll have the USAF’s Space Test Program Flight 2, which includes experimental smallsat payloads and a number of research projects from NASA.