Update: Just before EST (14:00 UTC) on Thursday, December 17, at 9:00 am, SpaceX 2020 is on track for its final launch and landing attempt.
After doing regular pre-wet dress rehearsal (WDR) and booster Constant fire Prior to each launch from September 2016, SpaceX began to gradually ease the need for aircraft proven rockets by 2020. Instead, it would be a standard fire data-driven detection tool if it reveals previous aircraft or post-aircraft inspection problems. For aircraft-proven boosters with a healthy clean bill, so to speak, SpaceX seems confident enough to avoid practice on a few internal Starling launches and odd customer work.
Now, despite NRO’s first direct missile deal with NROL-108 SpaceX and the launch of the first aircraft on any proven Falcon 9 rocket, let alone the four aircraft boosters assigned to support it, the intelligence agency is apparently equally confident. SpaceX. The Falcon 9B1059, a new overhead and payload justification and unspecified NROL-108 payload (s) launched vertically at the Kennedy Space Center (KSC) launch pad at 39AV on December 16 – delayed any previous WDR or standard fire test December 17 launch launch Try.
This mission is the 26th and final release of SpaceX in 2020 – which will avoid a big surprise. – This year’s last orbit is the US release. As usual, the SpaceX launch site will be broadcast live, with coverage starting 15 minutes before the liftoff (8:45 EST / UTC-5).
The National Reassessment Office (NRO) says SpaceX is on track to launch its last Falcon 9 launch and landing after a nearly two-month delay.
Originally scheduled to launch in early October, the secret orbital intelligence agency’s NROL-108 launch plans were quietly revealed in the regular communications permit requests filed with SpaceX FCC. Unfortunately, the Falcon 9 booster engine issue stopped SpaceX releases at the last minute, forcing the company to undergo a quick but comprehensive anomaly investigation. If this changes, the Falcon 9 booster designated to support NROL-108 (B1059) is practically siblings with three new boosters affected.
The SpaceX B1059 may have had to replace some of the nine Merlin 1D engines, although the B1059 successfully completed four launches and landings during that time. In the end, though nothing is certain, payload-side issues with the NROL-108 satellite (s) often lead to a continuous eight-week delay. Now, SpaceX, confirmed by the NRO on December 14th, is scheduled to launch its second mission for the spy agency (NET) from 9am to 12pm EST (14: 00-17: 00 UTC) on Thursday, December 17th.
According to SpaceX, this is the third time in a single month that a customer has effectively flown multiple Falcon 9 booster reusable milestones, reaffirming the company’s serious confidence in aircraft – proven rockets. On December 6, the Falcon 9 booster B1058 was launched for the fourth time in support of SpaceX’s CRS-21 space station reconstruction mission for NASA, marking the space agency’s first launch pad twice. Or Three-time flying booster.
On December 13, another Falcon 9 booster carrying a large communications satellite to Sirius XM was launched for the seventh time, boasting of being the first private customer to be launched on a five-plane or six-space SpaceX rocket.
Four days after SXM-7, SpaceX is now scheduled to launch the mysterious NROL-108 mission. This is the first time an NRO has launched a payload on a proven commercial rocket of any kind, as well as its first launch on a two-plane, three-plane or four-plane booster – the largest ever ever taken by a SpaceX customer. NRO’s first and only SpaceX launch – technically contracted by spacecraft provider Bell Aerospace, not NRO – was completed in May 2017.
Although less important, the four-aircraft Falcon 9 booster will be SpaceX’s first US government NROL-108, another indication that even its most conservative customers have fully purchased the value and technical reliability of reusable rockets.
After launch, the Falcon 9B1059 will return to Florida coast to land in one of SpaceX’s two East Coast landing zones. A minute or so after the booster separation, the Falcon 9’s two payload ferry halves are expected to sink about 330 km (~ 205 miles), where SpaceX rescue ships will search for GO and recover the GO Ms tree.
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