CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. – SpaceX is targeting no earlier than next week for the launch of a Falcon 9 rocket and communications satellite from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, according to a warning issued to pilots and mariners on Tuesday.
The Air Force's 45th Space Wing issued a Launch Hazard Area, or region of the Atlantic Ocean that boats and aircraft will need to vacate, for Monday, Dec. 16. The restricted area around the Cape will be in effect from 5 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
An exact launch window within that timeframe was not made available.
SpaceX is tasked with launching the JCSAT-18 / Kacific-1 commercial communications satellite from Launch Complex 40, a mission that will include a drone ship landing about eight minutes after liftoff. The Boeing-built spacecraft will provide coverage primarily for Asia and the Pacific.
A launch on Monday would tee up an action-packed week for the Eastern Range: Boeing and United Launch Alliance are targeting no earlier than 6:36 a.m. that Friday for the launch of an uncrewed Starliner capsule on its maiden flight to the International Space Station. If successful, its eight-day stay at the ISS will pave the way for a crewed flight sometime next year.
Also on Tuesday, SpaceX’s Just Read the Instructions drone ship arrived at Port Canaveral and joined its Of Course I Still Love You sibling ship.