Hawthorne-based SpaceX will attempt Monday to launch a South Korean military communications satellite into orbit, and it may set a record in the process.
The launch of the Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral in Florida is scheduled for 2 p.m. California time. The launch was originally scheduled last Tuesday, but was delayed due to a last-minute repair issue.
The rocket will be carrying the South Korean ANASIS-II satellite, which is scheduled to be deployed into orbit about 32 minutes after liftoff of the rocket, according to SpaceX.
The first stage of the Falcon 9 rocket was previously used in SpaceX’s historic May 30 launch of two astronauts to the International Space Station. If Monday’s launch is successful, the 51-day turnaround time will break the company’s record for the re-use of such a space vehicle. According to Spaceflight Now, SpaceX’s previous fastest turnaround time for a rocket was 62 days. NASA, meanwhile, launched the space shuttle Atlantis twice in 54 days in 1985. The time between Atlantis’ landing and subsequent launch was 50 days, Spaceflight Now reported.
Following Monday’s launch, SpaceX will again attempt to land the first stage of the rocket on its floating drone ship, named “Just Read the Instructions,” in the Atlantic Ocean for re-use in future missions.
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