SpaceX has launched its Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral on Monday, and it was headed due east over the Atlantic Ocean. The rocket was scheduled to deliver the SES-12 communications satellite into the orbit.
Falcon 9 rocket is about 229 foot tall and was launched from pad 40 at about 12:29 AM EDT on Monday. The launch window for the launch was for about 4 hours. At the top of the rocket, SES 12 communications satellite has been placed, and the spacecraft was manufactured by the Airbus Defense and Space and has got plasma thrusters which eliminate the need for the large conventional liquid fuel tanks. The weight of the SES 12 was 11,867 pounds.
As per the plan, the 9 Merlin 1D engines of the first stage was shut down after two minutes and 45 seconds after liftoff. The booster propellants then help the rocket to move forward before they fell away and the single-engine powered the second stage which has taken over and completed the rest of the journey.
This launch was the 56th launch of the Falcon 9 rocket, and it is SpaceX’s 11th flight on this year and also the 5th launch for the SES. SpaceX has not tried to recover the block four first stage which was limited to only two flights. The stage crashed landed on the surface of the ocean. The company is planning to transit the upgraded version of Block 5 boosters that are specially designed for 50 to 60 flights.
The SES-12communication satellite was positioned at about 95 degrees east longitude and are co-located with SES-8 relay station. After undergoing some tests and checkouts, SES 12 will be operational from next year. It will be providing direct-to-home television broadcasts, data relay services and video across the Middle East, Australia and the Asia-Pacific for 15 years.