Science

SpaceX reschedules Falcon Heavy test fire

SpaceX reschedules Falcon Heavy test fire

However, these rumors about mission failure were recently cleared out by Gwynne Shotwell, SpaceX President who negated the reports stating that the classified Zuma satellite was successfully planted in the Earth's lower orbit after its launch.

The pinpoint landing of Falcon's booster marks the 21st time that SpaceX has successfully completed the pioneering maneuver, which recovers for reuse a costly part of the rocket that traditionally is expended during launch. The rocket's second stage propels the satellite into orbit. Rumors associated with the same stated that the mission lost control during the second stage of separation from the rocket and fell back into the Earth.

The Wall Street Journal quotes unidentified congressional officials who were briefed on the mission as saying the satellite apparently did not separate from the second stage, and plunged through the atmosphere and burned up.

Northrop Grumman - which provided the satellite for an undisclosed US government entity - said it can not comment on classified missions.

A spokesman for Northrop Grumman Corp., which built the satellite, said Monday: "This is a classified mission".

"For clarity: after review of all data to date, Falcon 9 did everything correctly on Sunday night".

"If we or others find otherwise based on further review, we will report it immediately", she said.




Brian Mahlstedt, an automation software engineer at SpaceX, told live-stream viewers: "We're not going to show video coverage of it, but we will confirm that the fairings have separated, meaning that Zuma and second stage are the only vehicles continuing on to their final orbit". He said a number designation was assigned by federal space trackers, but that doesn't mean there is anything still in orbit.

SpaceX is led by Elon Musk and has been rapidly expanding its launch business, which includes NASA, national security and commercial missions. No further requests for communication were entertained by the company regarding the mission.

Musk has said it is possible that the Falcon Heavy's first launch could end with the rocket blowing up, so he's placing his personal property - his Tesla Roadster - in the nosecone as payload.

On its website, SpaceX says it has more than 70 upcoming missions on its launch manifest, which could take several years.

SpaceX has pushed back an historic test of the Falcon Heavy, the world's largest rocket.

Last year was a banner year for the private space company with 18 launches.


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