Saturday, 20 October, 2018


Unusual light from rocket launch visible in northern Nevada

Amy Powell Amy Powell @abc7amy
Kristine Garrett | 10 October, 2018, 07:46

The primary goal of the mission was to place the SAOCOM 1A satellite into space, but SpaceX also wanted to expand its recovery of first-stage boosters to its launch site at Vandenberg Air Force Base, about 130 miles north-west of Los Angeles.

Minutes earlier, the Falcon 9 rocket had leapt off the pad, tasked with delivering Argentina's newest Earth-observing satellite-SAOCOMM-1A- into space.

Residents in southern California could see a rocket launch and hear sonic booms on Sunday evening as part of a historic SpaceX mission from Vandenberg Air Force Base in Santa Barbara County.

SpaceX launched and landed the Falcon 9 rocket on Sunday night - making it the first successful landing of an orbital class rocket booster on West Coast land.

After about two minutes there was a division of the degrees, and 12 minutes after start of the first stage landed successfully at site LZ-4 spaceport 4W (SLC-4W) on the coast of California. If SpaceX is planning to reuse B1048 a third time with SSO-A, that will demand a record-breaking turnaround for the booster, as few as 42 days between landing #2 and launch #3. Land-based booster recovery requires more fuel to make it back to dry land. SpaceX got in on the action themselves, sharing four photos of the dazzling light display. SpaceX already has recovered rocket boosters several times, both on land in Florida and on drone ships at sea.

The mission's main goal is to gather soil moisture information. The mission will also help planners and emergency-management officials keep tabs on wildfires, floods and other disasters.

The company, owned by Elon Musk, posted a video of the Falcon 9's launch and successful return. Its acronym is short for Satelite Argentino de Observacion Con Microondas.

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