On Monday, an unmanned Falcon 9 rocket lifted off from Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The satellite was launched to enhance the spying capabilities.
This was SpaceX’s first mission for the National Reconnaissance Office. The company has launched its first recycled rocket just last month. SpaceX is the brain child of Founder of Tesla, Elon Musk who announced himself on Twitter that both the launch and landing were good.
“Tough call, as high altitude wind shear was at 98.6 percent of the theoretical load limit,” he said in a tweet. Earlier in the morning, he noted about the wind, “Worrying, but not a showstopper.”
The launch was supposed to have taken place on 30th April but has to be stopped at the last minute due to a bad sensor.
The company headquarters in Hawthorne, California said that it was the 34th mission for SpaceX, however it is the first launch for the Department of Defense which has even sued the Air Force once over its exclusive launch services contract with United Launch Alliance (ULA), a partnership of Lockheed-Martin and Boeing.
This launch officially broke the ULA’s 10 year monopoly on launching U.S. military and national security satellites and SpaceX has also won two more Air Force contracts to launch Global Positioning System satellites in 2018 and 2019. This would mark the beginning of SpaceX to become one of the major launch service provider to the Department of Defense.