Read the Beforeitsnews.com story here. Advertise at Before It's News here.
Profile image
Story Views
Now:
Last hour:
Last 24 hours:
Total:

SpaceX GPS satellite launch, landing opens door for first US military Falcon 9 reuse

% of readers think this story is Fact. Add your two cents.


SpaceX has successfully launched its third GPS III navigation satellite and simultaneously confirmed that the now once-flown Falcon 9 booster responsible will soon support the US military’s first operational launch on a flight-proven commercial rocket.

Known as GPS III Space Vehicle 04 (SV04), the ~3700 kg (~8150 lb) navigation satellite will join three other upgraded spacecraft launched since December 2018 – two of which flew on SpaceX Falcon 9 rockets. Of the six GPS III launch contracts the US military has thus far awarded, SpaceX has secured all but one, netting a total of $474 million for an average per-launch cost just shy of $95 million – likely saving more than $50 million per launch relative to comparable ULA contracts.

In June 2020, US Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center (USAF SMC) took the next step towards even more affordable launches by allowing SpaceX to recover its Falcon 9 booster after future military missions. A mere three months after that milestone and Falcon 9 booster B1060’s successful post-GPS III SV03 landing, SMC took the most important step yet, announcing that it had reached an agreement with SpaceX to reuse Falcon 9 boosters on two upcoming GPS III launches.


SpaceX confirmed that tonight’s successful Falcon 9 launch and landing will open the door for the US military’s first operational use of a flight-proven booster. (SpaceX)

SMC announced the contract modification in late September, revealing that the Falcon 9 booster (B1062) assigned to launch GPS III SV04 no earlier than September 30th, 2020 would be reused on future GPS III SV05 and SV06 missions, ultimately cutting almost $53 million of the cost to launch GPS III satellites SV03 through SV06.

Unfortunately for B1062, the SpaceX rocket’s GPS III SV04 launch debut was initially delayed by competitor ULA’s own unrelated launch delays, followed by a last-second abort on October 2nd after the rocket detected anomalous behavior in two of its nine Merlin 1D engines. SpaceX ultimately traced the issue back to faulty quality assurance and a blocked vent line, replaced both engines (and several more on different boosters), and completed a second static fire on October 31st.


Falcon 9 B1062 streaks towards orbit. (Richard Angle)

On November 5th, things finally came together for the company and Falcon 9 B1062, a new upper stage and payload fairing, an GPS III SV04 lifted off from SpaceX’s Cape Canaveral Air Force Station (CCAFS) LC-40 launch pad. The previously unflown booster performed perfectly, ultimately completing a soft landing on drone ship Of Course I Still Love You (OCISLY) after sending the satellite and upper stage on their way to orbit. A brisk eight or so minutes after liftoff, Falcon 9’s second stage shut off, coasted in orbit for 55 minutes, reignited for 45 seconds, and coasted another 25 minutes before finally releasing GPS III SV04 to complete the mission.

Mission complete and Falcon 9 B1062 intact and soon to be secured aboard drone ship OCISLY, SpaceX has now fully opened the door to reuse the same booster to launch GPS III SV05 and SV06. Over the course of its announcement, SMC did not that SpaceX’s GPS III SV05 mission had been delayed from January to July 2021 to allow extra time for the extremely conservative customer to “validate” SpaceX’s reuse process. If successful, SpaceX will then likely fly the same booster – B1062 – a third time to launch GPS III SV06 no earlier than (NET) Q3 2021.

The post SpaceX GPS satellite launch, landing opens door for first US military Falcon 9 reuse appeared first on TESLARATI.



Source: https://www.teslarati.com/spacex-gps-satellite-launch-first-us-military-falcon-9-reuse/


Before It’s News® is a community of individuals who report on what’s going on around them, from all around the world.

Anyone can join.
Anyone can contribute.
Anyone can become informed about their world.

"United We Stand" Click Here To Create Your Personal Citizen Journalist Account Today, Be Sure To Invite Your Friends.

Please Help Support BeforeitsNews by trying our Natural Health Products below!


Order by Phone at 888-809-8385 or online at https://mitocopper.com M - F 9am to 5pm EST


Order by Phone at 888-809-8385 or online at https://www.herbanomic.com M - F 9am to 5pm EST


Humic & Fulvic Trace Minerals Complex - Nature's most important supplement! Vivid Dreams again!

HNEX HydroNano EXtracellular Water - Improve immune system health and reduce inflammation

Ultimate Clinical Potency Curcumin - Natural pain relief, reduce inflammation and so much more.

MitoCopper - Bioavailable Copper destroys pathogens and gives you more energy. (See Blood Video)
Oxy Powder - Natural Colon Cleanser!  Cleans out toxic buildup with oxygen! 
Nascent Iodine - Promotes detoxification, mental focus and thyroid health.
Smart Meter Cover -  Reduces Smart Meter radiation by 96%!  (See Video)

Immusist Beverage Concentrate - Proprietary blend, formulated to reduce inflammation while hydrating and oxygenating the cells.

Report abuse
Loading...

    Comments

    Your Comments
    Question   Razz  Sad   Evil  Exclaim  Smile  Redface  Biggrin  Surprised  Eek   Confused   Cool  LOL   Mad   Twisted  Rolleyes   Wink  Idea  Arrow  Neutral  Cry   Mr. Green

    MOST RECENT
    Load more ...

    SignUp

    Login

    Newsletter

    Email this story
    Email this story

    If you really want to ban this commenter, please write down the reason:

    If you really want to disable all recommended stories, click on OK button. After that, you will be redirect to your options page.