SpaceX Edges Closer To Weekend Launch

14 January, 2017, 00:47 | Author: Elaine Woods
  • SpaceX Falcon rocket lifts off from Space Launch Complex 4E at Vandenberg Air Force Base

The main factor behind that loss was the schedule disruption caused by the breakup of a Falcon 9 shortly after liftoff in June of that year. But last September, a launch-pad failure forced another suspension of flights.

The accident destroyed not only the Falcon 9 rocket but also its payload, the Amos 6 communications satellite.

A failed pressure vessel in a liquid oxygen tank was blamed for the explosion.

The company will be sending up Falcon 9 rocket Saturday from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California at 9:54 a.m.

The launch and a landing will take place at separate locations.

SpaceX, as the company is commonly referred, had initially planned its first launch after a four-month hiatus for January 8, but poor weather conditions in California forced the company to postpone the launch. SpaceX was already launching rockets at a fraction of the price of its competitors, which is why it's been able to build up a $10 billion contract buffer in terms of scheduled future launches, but in doing so it's cutting pretty close to the quick in terms of profit potential.

SpaceX Prepares Falcon 9 for Launch and Landing. As per the contract between SpaceX and Iridium, a total of 66 new satellites will be launched and across seven launches.

SpaceX, based near Los Angeles, has delayed several launches since its latest explosion. Its published price for a Falcon 9 launch is $62 million, which is just a little more than half the cost of a bare-bones Atlas 5 rocket launch. The company's chief financial officer said SpaceX remains in a strong financial position.

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SpaceX's Redmond office is the center for its satellite operations. When Iridium signed with SpaceX in 2010 to launch 70 Iridium-NEXT satellites, valued at $492 million, it was the largest single launch deal ever engaged. Pacific Time, delivering 10 satellites to low-Earth orbit for Iridium, a satellite communications company.

The Wall Street Journal reports today the Elon Musk-led company went from small profits to hemorrhaging $250 million past year.

The Journal's report suggests that Musk wasn't kidding.

The documents obtained by the Journal contain projections of 40 million subscribers and more than $30 billion in revenue for the satellite internet business by 2025.

The documents also indicate Musk owned 54 percent of SpaceX stock in 2015 and held 78 percent of the company's votes.

This is SpaceX's first mission since August, and the stakes are high.

SpaceX isn't alone in setting its sights on sateliite internet services as a financial frontier: Another venture called OneWeb is planning to start deploying a similar network by 2019.

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