Forecast looks good for SpaceX launch early Monday

90 percent chance of favorable weather

Space X Falcon 9 Rocket
Space X Falcon 9 Rocket

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. – If you can stay up late enough Sunday -- or wake up early Monday -- it should be a nice time to watch a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket blast off and then try to land back at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

News 6 partner Florida Today reports that the rocket and a Dragon capsule carrying International Space Station supplies are targeting liftoff at 12:44 a.m. Monday.

Forecasters predict a 90 percent chance of favorable weather for the instantaneous window at Launch Complex 40, with a small chance that clouds or a shower could get in the way.

If the first attempt scrubs, a second try would be possible late Tuesday, when the forecast shows a 70 percent chance of acceptable conditions.

SpaceX is launching its ninth of 20 missions planned under a NASA resupply contract worth up to $3.1 billion.

The Dragon is packed with nearly 5,000 pounds of cargo, including a docking ring needed for astronauts flying in SpaceX or Boeing capsules to link up to the station in the next year or two.

About 10 minutes after liftoff, the first stage of the Falcon 9 will fly back to a landing pad near the tip of Cape Canaveral for the first time since December when SpaceX achieved its first booster landing.

SpaceX has landed four boosters so far, including three at sea, in its effort to develop reusable rockets that could dramatically lower launch costs.