Everything’s Set For SpaceX’s First 2019 Launch


SpaceX never takes a break. The company is preparing its next launch and the next project will be an important one, the way SpaceX accustomed us. This time the enhanced Iridium NEXT satellite communications constellation should be launched. It is the eight launch and the last one for this project as well.

As always, you can find more details on Twitter:

Static fire test of Falcon 9 complete. Working with customer to determine best launch opportunity to complete the Iridium NEXT constellation; will announce targeted launch date once confirmed.

— SpaceX (@SpaceX) January 6, 2019

The Iridium constellation

There is only one satellite communications constellation that is able to offer coverage all over the Earth. That is the Iridium constellation. It was first launched between 1997 and 1998, and in 2019 we will see its new chapter.

@SpaceX #falcon9 vertical at SLC-4. Iridium NEXT-8 slated for 01/08 from #VandenbergAFB. #spacex #iridium pic.twitter.com/uJBIgG5Lrp

— Brian Sandoval (@brianksphotos) January 6, 2019

The fact that Iridium chose SpaceX for the NEXT constellation it is a proof that SpaceX is a reliable company. At first the launches were supposed to take over 24 months. The project was supposed to begin in 2015 and end in 2017. However, SpaceX had to deal with some delays.

The satellites’ debut began in January 2017, and every 3 or 4 months a new launch took place. The NEXT satellites were needed since Iridium’s past satellites have exceeded their lifespans. However, NEXT will also help the company increase its bandwidth, and this will be a major enhancement that is supposed to overcome any competitors.

Iridium open to rideshares for spare satellite launches https://t.co/ino39oWCHw pic.twitter.com/56PTcaEMW3

— SpaceNews (@SpaceNews_Inc) January 4, 2019

The launch date should also be announced soon, so keep an eye on Twitter.


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