SpaceX Iridium Successfully Launches From Vandenberg Air Force Base

13 January, 2019, 22:10 | Author: Kelly Sanders
  • An early-morning rocket launch traces an arc of light across the horizon

"Iridium is the only satellite communications network that spans the entire globe and Iridium NEXT is one of the largest "tech upgrades" in space history", SpaceX said in a statement.

The rocket is expected to carry 10 satellites from Iridium into orbit.

Including new boosters that have arrived at their launch pads but have yet to launch, SpaceX's skilled production and testing team managed to ship, test, and deliver an impressive 1 to 1.5 Falcon 9 boosters, 1-2 upper stages, and 3-4 payload fairing halves on average each month.

A Space Exploration Technologies Falcon 9 rocket heads toward orbit after launch from Vandenberg Air Force Base on Friday.

SpaceX landed the booster on its droneship "Just Read The Instructions", stationed safely out in the Pacific.

But the primary objective of the rocket launch involved completing the $3 billion Iridium Next constellation to provide voice and data communication anywhere on the globe.


Once all 10 commercial satellites have been released, Iridium Next will have 75 spacecraft in orbit, with 66 of those used for the constellation and the others serving as in-orbit spares.

The rocket lifted off at 7:31 a.m. Friday at Vandenberg Air Force Base and arced over the Pacific Ocean west of Los Angeles.

Friday s launch was SpaceX s eighth and final in a series for Iridium, which is headquartered in Virginia. This will be the company's first landing attempt since a stage launched December 5 malfunctioned and "landed" in the Atlantic Ocean off Cape Canaveral. Deployment of the satellites is scheduled to be completed a little over an hour after liftoff.

Iridium has been moving its new satellites into positions that were held by the old ones, which are lowered until they burn up in the atmosphere.

Iridium is deorbiting its original fleet of satellites.

Recommended:



Popular

Apple Addresses iPad Pro 'Bend' Drama With Support Page Outlining Manufacturing Process
No matter how many times Apple says its iPad is "strong, light, and durable", if it is bent, even if slightly, then it is bent. Last September I wondered if an iPad - with iOS 11 and the Files app - might replace my MacBook.

Betts, Red Sox settle at record $20M, avoid arbitration
The Sox have already struck deals with relievers Heath Hembree and Tyler Thornburg to avoid arbitration. His almost $10 million jump is the highest arbitration raise ever received by a position player.

Velvet Buzzsaw Trailer Teases Netflix’s Star Studded Horror Flick
Velvet Buzzsaw aims to do the same within the world of fine art. Velvet Buzzsaw's tagline reads: "All art is risky ". Velvet Buzzsaw hits Netflix on February 1.

Sudan police fire tear gas as protests erupt in Khartoum, Darfur
He is wanted by the International Criminal Court for war crimes and other abuses against civilians during the Darfur conflict. Witnesses told AFP that police were pursuing protesters down Bahari's streets and alleys.

Death toll rises in Europe as snow continues to fall
Media reports out of Austria say the family were skiing together when they became stuck in hard terrain, and called for help. The school has reopened today and will be open next week for any students in need of counselling or support.

Pompeo discusses United States drawdown in Syria with Turkish counterpart
That drew a rebuke from Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan who called his comments "a serious mistake". For years Trump has criticized USA deployment in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan.

Ocasio-Cortez’s Attacks on Democrats Have Party Scrambling for Damage Control
According to reports , the campaign was forced to pay a $1,500 fine for not providing the required insurance. Her chief of staff also fired back at House Democratic lawmakers who spoke to Politico about Ocasio-Cortez.

Those With High Fiber Diets Have Lower Death, Disease Risks
These high fiber consumers also had "significantly" lower body weight, blood pressure and total cholesterol, the authors found. But it adds that for people with an iron deficiency, high levels of whole grains can further reduce iron levels.

Tennis match-fixing investigation: Spain arrests 15 people
Each player's match was attended by a member of the Armenian ring, who made sure the player complied with the agreement. Authorities said the players tainted results after taking bribes from an Armenian ring that was dismantled in October.

Lawyer: R. Kelly denies all sexual misconduct allegations
At the same time, Greenberg said he didn't think Kelly's career would be hurt by the allegations. The singer has denied all allegations of sexual misconduct involving women and underage girls.