Netease Technologies News Jan. 12, According to TheVerge, SpaceX completed its first Falcon 9 rocket launch mission in California in 2019 this morning, putting all 10 satellites of Iridium, its long-term customer, into low earth orbit. Since then, SpaceX has recovered the Falcon 9 rocket using an unmanned ship, bringing the total number of successful recoveries to 33.
Todays mission, called Iridium-8, will put the last satellites to orbit for the Iridium NEXT project. SpaceX has signed a contract with Iridium to launch all 75 orbiting satellites for the satellite network, which will provide low Earth orbit signal coverage. The satellite network is the replacement and upgrading of Iridiums original satellite network, which was originally composed of satellites launched between 1997 and 2002.
SpaceX regularly launches 10 new satellites in batches from California, only five at a time. Todays launch will complete the Iridium network.
About 10 minutes after liftoff, SpaceX worked hard to ensure that its Falcon 9 rocket landed on an unmanned ship in the ocean. SpaceXs last mission in December was to launch a GPS satellite for the U.S. Air Force. Because of its confidentiality, the company chose not to recover its Falcon 9 rocket after launch. Before that flight, SpaceXs Falcon 9 rocket attempted to land on the Florida coast, but unfortunately fell into the ocean.
Fortunately for SpaceX, todays rocket recovery is very smooth. The Falcon 9 rocket launched the Telstar 18VANTAGE satellite from Florida in September 2018 and landed on an unmanned ship in the Atlantic Ocean. The successful recovery of the rocket marks the 33rd successful recovery of the Falcon 9 rocket propeller by SpaceX. (small)
Source: Responsible Editor of Netease Science and Technology Report: Wang Fengzhi_NT2541