SpaceX launches Falcon 9 and two communications satellites from Cape Canaveral
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Just after sunset Friday, a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket illuminated the Space Coast's dusk sky after an on-time liftoff from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.
The 7:38 p.m. EDT mission from Launch Complex 40 carried the SES 18 and 19 communications satellites to orbit for Luxembourg-based operator SES, then wrapped up with a drone ship landing in the Atlantic Ocean. It marked SpaceX's second flight of the day after a different Falcon 9 launch four hours prior from Vandenberg Space Force Base in California, which boosted another batch of the company's Starlink internet satellites. That mission also included a drone ship landing.
Once operational in orbit, the Florida-launched SES satellites will help to deliver data and digital television services to millions of homes across the United States. They'll spend the next several weeks raising their orbits to some 22,236 miles above Earth's surface.
SpaceX's next launch, meanwhile, has been tentatively scheduled for no earlier than Friday, March 24. That's slated to include even more Starlink internet satellites.
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Apart from SpaceX activity, Relativity Space at the Cape's Launch Complex 16 is gearing up for its third attempt at the inaugural launch of its Terran 1 rocket on Wednesday, March 22. Liftoff of the world's first 3D-printed rocket is slated to happen during a three-hour window that opens at 10 p.m. EDT, the company confirmed on Friday.
Look for FLORIDA TODAY's live launch coverage to begin 90 minutes before the launch window opens at https://www.floridatoday.com/space/.
For the latest, visit floridatoday.com/launchschedule.
Contact Jamie Groh at JGroh@floridatoday.com and follow her on Twitter at @AlteredJamie.
Launch Wednesday, March 22
Company / Agency: Internal Relativity Space mission
Rocket: Terran 1
Location: Launch Complex 16 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station
Launch Window: 10:00 p.m. EDT Wednesday to 1:00 a.m. EDT Thursday
Landing: None; Terran 1 is expendable
Live coverage: Starts 90 minutes before liftoff at floridatoday.com/space
About: Relativity Space will attempt the first orbital launch of its 110-foot, 3D-printed Terran 1 rocket. The inaugural demonstration mission known as "Good Luck, Have Fun" will not feature any customer payloads. The Terran 1 rocket is the largest 3D-printed object to attempt orbital flight.
This article originally appeared on Florida Today: Florida sunset SpaceX launch followed California liftoff hours before