Hawthorne-based SpaceX successfully launched an Israeli communications satellite into orbit Tuesday from Cape Canaveral.
The AMOS-17 mission launched aboard a Falcon 9 rocket at 4:23 p.m. California time. That was about 30 minutes past the originally planned launch time, with the liftoff delayed while SpaceX officials monitored questionable weather conditions in Florida.
But Mother Nature eventually cooperated, and the liftoff occurred without a hitch.
The satellite, designed by Israeli communications firm Spacecom, is expected “to provide increased connectivity to Africa,” according to SpaceX.
“AMOS-17 is poised to support growth in a variety of broadcast, broadband, mobility and data services throughout the African continent,” according to SpaceX.
The satellite was carried into orbit by a Falcon 9 rocket that was used in previous missions in July 2018 and November 2018. Due to the requirements of Tuesday’s launch, SpaceX did not attempt to recover the rocket again for use in future missions.
In 2016, a Spacecom satellite dubbed AMOS-6 and valued at nearly $200 million was destroyed in an explosion that occurred during a pre-launch test firing of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket at Cape Canaveral.
Despite that mishap, Spacecom CEO David Pollack told reporters last week that the company still had confidence in SpaceX, saying they “do a very good job.”
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