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Liftoff! SpaceX launches US Space Force GPS satellite into orbit aboard its Falcon 9 rocket 

Liftoff! SpaceX successfully launches US Space Force GPS satellite into orbit aboard its Falcon 9 rocket

  • SpaceX launched a GPS satellite for US Space Force aboard the Falcon 9 rocket
  • The launch took off at 4:10pm  ET at Kennedy Space Center in Florida
  • This is Falcon 9’s 11th launch this year, but this time it featured a new booster
  • The satellite will be added to the network constellation used by the military 

SpaceX successfully launched a GPS satellite for the US Space Force into orbit aboard its Falcon 9 rocket.

‘SpaceX go, GPS satellite go,’ the ground crew said over the live stream when the countdown hit zero and the rocket took off towards space.

This is the Falcon 9’s 11th launch this year, but this mission featured a new booster as a requirement by the Air Force.

The booster, dubbed B1060, carried an advanced global positioning satellite to replace an older satellite that has been orbiting Earth for the past 20 years.

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SpaceX successfully launched a GPS satellite for the US Space Force into orbit aboard its Falcon 9 rocket

SpaceX successfully launched a GPS satellite for the US Space Force into orbit aboard its Falcon 9 rocket

Falcon 9 took off from Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral 4:10 pm ET and hit sonic speeds after a minute or so following lift off.

The rocket reached orbit and the fairing fell away from the vehicle, which will be scooped out of the Atlantic.

‘Everything is looking good with the trajectory,’ a ground crew member said four minutes into the flight.

‘Everything is go on the flight of Falcon 9 with GPS III.’

Falcon 9 took off from Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral 4:10 pm ET and hit sonic speeds after a minute or so following lift off. The rocket reached orbit and the fairing fell away from the vehicle, which will be scooped out of the Atlantic

Falcon 9 took off from Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral 4:10 pm ET and hit sonic speeds after a minute or so following lift off. The rocket reached orbit and the fairing fell away from the vehicle, which will be scooped out of the Atlantic

This is the Falcon 9’s 11th launch this year, but this mission featured a new booster as a requirement by the Air Force

This is the Falcon 9’s 11th launch this year, but this mission featured a new booster as a requirement by the Air Force

'SpaceX go, GPS satellite go,’ the ground crew said over the live stream when the countdown hit zero and the rocket took off towards space

‘SpaceX go, GPS satellite go,’ the ground crew said over the live stream when the countdown hit zero and the rocket took off towards space

This is the seventh launch of a US Space Force satellite into orbit and it honors Colonel Thomas Falzarano who was the commander of the 21st space wing at Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado – he died May 13 of natural causes.

The satellite, called GPS III space vehicle 03, is part of a constellation of 31 satellites designed and built by Lockheed Martin.

These devices provide signals that are more accurate and powerful than previous generations, which boost performance for both civilians and military users.

The satellite, called GPS III space vehicle 03,  launched atop the Falcon 9 and is part of a constellation of 31 satellites designed and built by Lockheed Martin

The satellite, called GPS III space vehicle 03,  launched atop the Falcon 9 and is part of a constellation of 31 satellites designed and built by Lockheed Martin

The booster, dubbed B1060, carried an advanced global positioning satellite to replace an older satellite that has been orbiting Earth for the past 20 years

The booster, dubbed B1060, carried an advanced global positioning satellite to replace an older satellite that has been orbiting Earth for the past 20 years

Cordell DeLaPena, program executive officer for SMC’s Space Production Corps, said prior to the launch: ‘The GPS III program brings a new standard of excellence for the entire space community.

‘Our production team and contract partners have developed an indispensable tool that is available to military and civil users around the world.’

‘Our team will continue to advance the launch campaign for the remaining space vehicles and I anticipate the successful launch of SV03 on the Falcon 9.’

This is the second attempt of the launch, as it was originally scheduled on April 29 but was pushed 60 more days in order for the team to implement new health and safety measure to protect the launch and crews amid the lingering coronavirus pandemic.

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