SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launched from Cape Canaveral


The Falcon 9 Block 5 and SpaceX's Crew Dragon are destined to be used for launching astronauts to the space station, starting as early as next April.

The Falcon 9 with the Block 5 launched from Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. It will now attempt to land on the Of Course I Still Love You barge - if successful, the company will most likely be planning for its third launch.

Today's launch lofted the Merah Putih satellite to a high geostationary transfer orbit.

SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket lifts off at 1:18 a.m. EDT (0518 GMT) Tuesday with the Merah Putih communications satellite.

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The 60-transponder, all C-band satellite separated from the rocket's upper stage nearly 32 minutes later. Its upgraded rocket allows the company to reuse a first-stage booster 10 times or more.

Put very simply Falcon 9 Block 5 is an iteration of the venerable launch vehicle that best represents SpaceX moving from reusable rockets as experimental prototypes to a successfully developed and implemented technology - with Block 5, SpaceX is effectively proclaiming that Falcon 9's reusability design has been completed and optimized thanks to dozens of rocket landings (28) and reuses (15).

Musk claims that the new Block 5 booster can be used for up to 100 launches with "moderate" refurbishment work, and costs only $50 million to launch.

"Ironically, we need to take it apart to confirm that it does not need to be taken apart", Musk said during a May 10 call with reporters.

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Launch commentator Lauren Lyons said the booster would be prepared for its third launch later this year. The satellite is owned by PT Telcom, the largest provider of telecommunications services in Indonesia. The new telecom craft was built by SSL in Palo Alto, California. Eastern from Cape Canaveral Air Force Base in Florida with Telkom Indonesia's Merah Putih satellite. He says that could happen as early as next year. The new satellite will service Indonesia and Southeast Asia.

Next up for SpaceX is launch of Telesat's Telstar 18 VANTAGE communications station from Cape Canaveral around August 17, following by launch of an Earth-observation satellite for Argentina.

APT Satellite of Hong Kong has an agreement to use capacity on Telstar 18 VANTAGE, which is also known as Apstar 5C.

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