NASA’s Kennedy Space Center played host to SpaceX’s successful launch of the EchoStar 105/SES-11 Payload. Yesterday’s launch marked the company’s 18th successful first stage booster landing, 17th launch of the year, third launch of a refurbished first stage booster, and their second launch this week. The milestones just keep tumbling in the path of Elon Musk’s innovative launch provider.
36 minutes after the launch of the SpaceX Falcon 9, the rocket’s second stage successfully deployed the EchoStar 105/SES-11 satellite into orbit. The dual-mission satellite for EchoStar and SES will supply C-band communications to the two companies’ Western hemisphere clientele.
“We are excited about the increased capabilities and expanded reach that EchoStar 105 will provide,” said the president of EchoStar, Anders Johnson. “EchoStar 105 will enable us to meet the evolving capacity requirements of our customers in North America as they grow their businesses and pursue new markets.”
“The successful launch of SES-11 further strengthens the centre of SES’s North American orbital arc and enables us to continue to provide a premium C-band service to the leading cable operators across the US.” said Martin Halliwell, Chief Technology Officer for SES. “We are also proud to launch on another SpaceX flight-proven Falcon 9 rocket and to continuously participate in innovative technology developments within the launch industry.”
The flight-proven rocket used in yesterday’s flight was first flown on February 19, 2017, launching a SpaceX Dragon Capsule to resupply the International Space Station. This was also the third flight using a flight-proven booster with SpaceX continuing to prove many of its harshest critics wrong regarding the viability of first stage reuse.
This week has been a busy one for the industry and SpaceX in particular. Yesterday’s launch was the second this week for the company with the first successfully deploying 10 Iridium-3 satellites. With a launch schedule that is backlogged by years and not months, the company seems to be ramping up its launch schedule to meet the demand.
Image Credit: SpaceX