Friday, 18 January, 2019

SpaceX Puts Powerful GPS Satellite for US Military Into Orbit

Military Satellite Elon Musk Falcon 9 Image Source Engadget
Theresa Hayes | 26 December, 2018, 13:41

The satellite was deployed to its intended orbit approximately one hour and 56 minutes after lift-off.

This next-generation Global Positioning System satellite is three times more accurate than previous versions and eight times better at anti-jamming, Heather Wilson, secretary of the Air Force says.

Elon Musk's SpaceX scrapped Saturday's launch of a long-delayed navigation satellite for the USA military due to strong upper level winds. In April 2016, SpaceX was awarded the first National Security Space mission and it has four other GPS III missions on contract.

Rocket Falcon 9 took form from Cape Canaveral at 8:51 a.m. whereas for schedules of the launch in the last week was canceled and delayed due to some serious reasons like those of the weather and technical issues.

The mission was SpaceX's first national security mission. Other attempts on Wednesday, Thursday and yesterday were also aborted due to similar problems and bad weather. The rocket flew in an expendable configuration, without any landing legs, at the request of SpaceX's customer, the US Air Force.

ULA has flown eight missions in 2018, and a ninth is scheduled for no earlier than 30 December from Vandenberg Air Force Base on California's central coast. The satellite provides improved services and longer lifetimes. "We put a requirement on there to produce stronger signals, to try and fight through some of that jamming that we see, particularly on our military signals".

Hawthorne, California-based SpaceX's valuation has climbed as it has racked up successful missions, making it the third-most valuable venture-backed start-up in the U.S. after Uber Technologies and Airbnb.

It is the first in a series, nicknamed Vespucci after the 15th-century Italian explorer who calculated Earth's circumference to within 80 kilometres.

This morning's launch was originally scheduled to occur on Tuesday (Dec. 18), but SpaceX called off that attempt after receiving an "out of family" reading from sensors on the Falcon 9's first stage.