SpaceX launches Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral

Liftoff early Tuesday from Launch Complex 40

By Cathleigh Winningham - Producer

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. - SpaceX launched a Falcon 9 rocket into space early Tuesday from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

SpaceX's fifth mission of the year -- and second overall launch from the Space Coast in as many days – blasted into space at 12:33 a.m. from Launch Complex 40. According to News 6 partner at Florida Today, teams had two hours to launch the satellite for Spain-based Hispasat.

Forecasters gave 90 percent "go" conditions for the liftoff, according to the Air Force's 45th Weather Squadron.

The satellite, known as Hispasat 30W-6, is a 12,000-pound spacecraft that will provide television, broadband and other communications services to the Americas and Europe. 

It was manufactured by Space Systems Loral in Palo Alto, California, before shipment to Cape Canaveral in January.

SpaceX is expected to boost the heavy satellite to a geostationary transfer orbit. 

The company did not attempt to land the rocket booster due to unfavorable weather conditions.

Tuesday's launch follows last Thursday's successful 5:02 p.m. blastoff of an Atlas V rocket with the newest National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration weather satellite, labeled GOES-S. The geostationary spacecraft should become fully operational before the end of the year.


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