Elon Musk‘s SpaceX launched a Falcon 9 rocket into space on Tuesday, marking the aerospace company’s 50th launch since the first rocket flew in June 2010. The mission flew a bus-sized satellite to an orbit 22,300 miles above the Earth.
The rocket, with the satellite attached to it, took off at 12:33 AM and deployed its payload 33 minutes later when it’s upper stage deployed the satellite, officially called Hispasat 30W-6, into an orbit some 22,300 miles above the Earth. The bus-sized satellite will hover above the planet’s surface, providing "television, broadband, corporate networks and other telecommunications solutions," SpaceX said in a press kit for the mission.
Dubbed the Hispasat 30W-6, it marks falcon 9’s heaviest payload ever at 6,092 kilograms (13,400 pounds). This launch also marks SpaceX's fifth completed mission this year, including the test of the Falcon Heavy, which launched a Tesla Roadster into space, and the Falcon 9’s 50th launch to date.
SpaceX usually attempts to land the re-useable rocket back on Earth but said it wouldn't attempt that this time due to unfavourable weather.
The launch came almost two weeks after a SpaceX rocket soared into the early morning sky over the California coast after liftoff from Vandenberg Air Force Base.