Live coverage of the countdown and launch of the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Space Station, Florida. The Falcon 9 rocket will launch the Eutelsat Hotbird 13G geostationary communications satellite. Follow us in Twitter.
SpaceX is scheduled to launch a Falcon 9 rocket Thursday morning from Cape Canaveral with the Eutelsat Hotbird 13G television broadcast. The liftoff is targeted at the end of the launch window at 1:22 am EDT (0522 GMT). Falcon’s first 9-stage flight will target landing on a drone ship landing in the Atlantic Ocean.
Parts of Falcon 9 landed at block 40 of the Cape Canaveral Space Station on Wednesday, a day after SpaceX launched a powerful Falcon 9 rocket several miles away from block 39A. The 9-foot-long (70-meter) Falcon 9 was raised vertically on the pad.
Forecasters from the US Space Force’s 45th Weather Wing predict a 90% probability of good weather for liftoff, with only a slight chance of cumulus clouds that pose a lightning threat.
From Airbus, the nearly 10,000-pound (4.5-metric ton) Hotbird 13G will fly hundreds of radio routes across Europe, the Middle East and North Africa. Hotbird 13G is the twin satellite of Hotbird 13F, which was launched on October 15 before the SpaceX Falcon mission. The two Hotaves are the first satellites to be built on Eurostar’s new Neo-Airbus space design, incorporating upgrades in propulsion, thermal control, and electrical systems.
On Thursday morning, the Falcon 9 launcher will be filled with millions of pounds of kerosene and liquid oxygen propellant in the final 35 minutes before liftoff.
After the technical teams and weather parameters are all “green” for launch, the nine main engines of the Merlin 1D will flash to life in the first stage of the run with the help of an ignition fluid called triethylaluminum/triethylborane or TEA-TEB. When the engines ramp up to full throttle, the hydraulic latches will open to launch the Falcon 9 into space.
The nine main engines produce a 1.7 million pound thrust for about two and a half minutes, propelling the Falcon 9 and the Eutelsat Hotbird 13G communications satellite into the air. Then the race stage – tail number B1067 in the SpaceX fleet – will close and separate from the Falcon 9’s upper stage.
the course of the titanium grid will extend the fins and the pulsating pulsation of the cold gastrons is oriented towards itself for the first entry of the tail into the atmosphere, before its reigning guns to burn the braking and the last port will burn, unless the vertical descent to the drone of the ship “Just Read the Instructions about 420 miles (about 675 kilometers) located east of Cape Canaveral.
The successful landing of the rocket on the spacecraft will mark the completion of the seventh space flight. The run is scheduled for June 3, 2021, with the launch of a Dragon cargo mission to the International Space Station, and will send two astronauts into space on NASA’s Crew-3 and Crew-4 missions. It also launched the Turcatat 5B communications satellite, the second space station mission on demand, and the latest batch of Starlink internet satellites on Sept. 18.
For the Hotbird 13G mission, the Falcon 9 rocket’s upper stage will fire two engines to inject the spacecraft into a geostationary elliptical transfer orbit with the apogee, or top, above Earth, more than 30,000 miles (50,000 kilometers) above Earth.
Hotbird 13G will separate from the Falcon 9 rocket approximately 36 minutes into the mission.
After deploying from the Falcon 9 launcher to begin its journey to geostationary orbit, the Hotbird 13G deployed solar arrays and used PPS5000 plasma orbit thrusters from the French company Safran for several months of orbit-elevation maneuvers to geostationary orbit rather than circular. 22,000 miles (about 36,000 kilometers) above the equator.
An efficient plasma propulsion system relies on xenon gas and electricity to generate thrust, rather than conventional liquid rocket fuel such as hydrazine. That reduces the weight of satellites, allowing engineers to launch smaller rockets or add payloads to increase the capacity for more communications with data clients.
However, orbital-excitation using electric propulsion takes longer than runs based on conventional rocket engines.
Hotbird 13G, like its predecessor Hotbird 13F, orbits in phase with the Earth’s rotation at 13 degrees east longitude.
By the middle of next year, Hotbird 13G should be ready to enter commercial service, to be broadcast from the 15th annual telecast to Eutelsat’s programming customers. Because of improvements in satellite communications technology, Eutelsat will only need two new Hotbird satellites to replace the three aging Hotbird satellites operating at 13 degrees east.
Pascal Homsy, chief technical officer of Eutelsat, said the Hotbird fleet at 13 degrees east will form a high-capacity satellite expansion system covering Europe, the Middle East, and North African regions, delivering 1,000 TV channels to more than 160 million homes. Hotbird 13F and 13G will broadcast signals on Ku-band frequencies.
“We have something like over 600 pay TV channels, 300 free to air channels, 450 high definition TV channels, and 14 ultra high definition channels broadcast from this flagship 13 degrees east,” Homsy said last month before the 13F Hotbird release. “We can also provide 500 radio stations and multimedia services.”
The launch of the 13G Hotbird 13G will mark SpaceX’s 51st mission in 2022, and the second in a series of three Falcon 9 flights for Eutelsat. The Eutelsat 10B communications satellite, designed to provide in-flight internet connectivity to airline passengers, was delivered from Europe to Cape Canaveral last week for launch on a Falcon 9 rocket later this month.
ROCKET: Falcon 9 (B1067.7)
PAYLOAD: Hotbird 13G communications satellite
Send Site: SLC-40, Cape Canaveral Space Station, Florida
SEND DATE: Nov
SEND WINDOWS: 11:26 pm – 1:22 am EDT (0326-0522 GMT)
STORMS ARE FORECASTED: 90% probability of favorable weather
RECOVERY BOOSTER: “Just Read the Instructions” drone ship
SEND AZIMUTH: the east
PARMA ORBITS: Geostationary transfer orbit
- T+00:00: Liftoff
- T+01:12: Maximum aerodynamic pressure (Max-Q)
- T+02:32: First stage main engine interval (MECO)
- T+02:35: Time of separation
- T+02:43: Second stage engine ignition
- T+03:23: Fairing jettison
- T + 06:30: Fires the first stage entry fire (three guns)
- T+06:55: The first scene of the burning border entry
- T+08:08: Second machine interval (SECO 1)
- T+08:22: First stage port fire burning (one engine)
- T + 08:44: First port scene
- T+29:11: Second stage engine restart
- T+30:10: Second stage engine interval (SECO 2)
- T+36:11: Hotbird 13G separation
- 184th launch of the Falcon 9 rocket since 2010
- 193rd launch of the Falcon rocket family since 2006
- 7th launch of Falcon 9 course B1067
- 157th Falcon 9 launch from Florida’s Space Coast
- 102nd Falcon 9 launch from pad 40
- 157th overall from pad 40
- 125th flight of the Falcon guilty of 9 courses
- 4th SpaceX launch for Eutelsat
- 50th Falcon 9 launch of 2022
- 51st launch by SpaceX in 2022
- 48th orbital launch attempt from Cape Canaveral in 2012
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