SpaceX's upgraded rocket soars with satellite for Bangladesh

Erika Holt
May 12, 2018

While the Block 5 rocket launch did not carry a crew, a crew-carrying version could launch as early as this year. Block 5 is the upgraded model Musk says could be reflown about a hundred times. Meanwhile, the second stage successfully sent the Bangabandhu Satellite-1 to geosynchronous transfer orbit.

Falcon 9 Block 5 is created to be capable of 10 or more flights with very limited refurbishment as SpaceX continues to strive for rapid reusability and extremely high reliability. The SpaceX founder and CEO also said he hopes to demonstrate that the same rocket can be launched, landed and then launched again within 24 hours.

An updated version of the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, tailored for eventual crewed missions for NASA, made its debut launch on Friday from Florida's Cape Canaveral carrying a communications satellite for Bangladesh into orbit. And this particular rocket will be showing off its landing skills after the flight.

"With the launch of Bangabandhu-1, we are hoisting our national flag into space".

Next Arsenal manager: Massimiliano Allegri future discussed by top Juventus star
Arsenal have slashed their managerial shortlist to five names with Massimilano Allegri, Mikel Arteta and Patrick Vieira still in the race to replace Arsene Wenger .

In Indiana, Trump says Dems would stymie economic progress
Pence met the three men on the tarmac of Joint Base Andrews in Maryland when Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's plane touched down. When the time comes that Trump is sent packing, Mike Pence should be where he's been all along, right beside him.

Android P to stop apps tracking and gathering data on users
A digital well being dashboard will tell you how much time you spend on your phone and offer measures to restrict your usage. However, unlike Google and Nexus devices, other phones won't be receiving over-the-air OTA update for the previews.

Minutes after launch, the rocket's first-stage booster flew itself to a touchdown on an oceangoing platform known as "Of Course I Still Love You".

It will mark the first time since the end of the U.S. space shuttle program in 2011 that a rocket has left United States soil carrying people to space. Block 5 has more powerful engines, more resilient hardware to survive the harsh conditions of re-entering the atmosphere and landing, less weight (notably through its unpainted components, such as the black interstage) and a more easily produced structure. The new version of the rocket is outfitted with upgrades created to make it more durable so it can be reused as many as 10 times, dramatically cutting the costs of space missions. While the base price for a launch that uses a brand-new Falcon 9 is $60 million, the equivalent price for a previously flown Falcon 9 is $50 million, he said.

Before the launch, Musk said he was "stressed" and that orbital rockets are hard enough, but building one that can fly 100 times is "crazy hard". The company will also have to cover the not-inconsequential development costs for the BFR and for SpaceX's Starlink broadband satellite constellation.

Other reports by

Discuss This Article

FOLLOW OUR NEWSPAPER