February 24, 2018

SpaceX launch planned Thursday at Vandenberg AFB

26 August 2017, 01:24 | Ruben Fields

SpaceX goes for a dozen today, and to surpass Russia in launches

SpaceX's twelfth launch and ninth recovery of 2017 ready for a Thursday liftoff

Vandenberg Air Force Base is set for another launch, this time, the launch of the FORMOSAT-5 satellite aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.

The two-stage Falcon 9 lifted off from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California at 2:51 p.m. EDT (1851 GMT; 11:51 a.m. local time), hauling the Formosat-5 spacecraft into the heavens. The event will be streamed live.

With today's launch, it seems that SpaceX is picking back up its mission pace.

SpaceX just loves to land their rockets.

The first stage on Thursday's launch, a newly-manufactured booster, will return to port in Southern California in a few days for inspections, refurbishment and potential reuse on a future mission. Thursday's satellite launch was the 12th SpaceX mission this year, meaning the company could reach its goal of weekly launches by 2019.

Google code hints at headphones that run Google Assistant
Most importantly, according to the report, these headphones would be capable of getting over-the-air software updates. Speculations are rife that the Google Pixel 2 and Pixel XL 2 smartphones would be unveiling in October this year.

The new space program, a collaboration between NSPO and the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration in the US, will collect data for weather forecasts and ionospheric, gravity, and climate research, former NSPO Director-General Chang Guey-shin (張桂祥) told CNA.

The NT$5.65 billion (S$254 million), 450kg mini-satellite, which will be used to collect data to evaluate the impact of natural disasters and monitor environmental changes on Earth, was designed and built from scratch by scientists and engineers from Taiwan's National Space Organisation. SpaceX now has 15 successful booster landings under its belt, marking a key step in its quest for rocket reusability.

Moments later, Formosat 5 flew free from the Falcon 9's upper stage. The gate opens at 10:30 a.m. and closes at 11:40 a.m. Weapons, alcohol, smoke, open fires and/or barbecues will not be allowed. There's a 42-minute launch window, too, so the vehicle can take off up until 3:33PM ET.

In a video clip, President Tsai Ing-wen said the successful launch represented a "big leap" in Taiwan's space technology and urged scientists to continue working to make more breakthroughs.

The next Falcon 9 launch from Vandenberg Air Force Base is scheduled for September 30 with the third batch of 10 next-generation voice and data relay satellites for Iridium.

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