Late Friday night, SpaceX is slated to launch a new upgraded Global Positioning System satellite for the US Space Force from Cape Canaveral, Florida - the latest spacecraft meant to help modernize the current Global Positioning System fleet.
The Elon Musk-owned experimental rocket company SpaceX has confirmed lift-off is scheduled to take place at 9:43pm ET (2.43am BST on Saturday morning). "Average latency will improve as more satellites launch (directly above you more frequently) and more ground stations are deployed", Musk said in a tweet last Thursday.
If Friday night's launch for the Space Force is successful, it will be the third National Security Space Launch by a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.
The company said it was targetting 7:29 a.m. for liftoff from Kennedy Space Center's 39A launch pad.
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Everyone is invited to watch the launch for free, courtesy of SpaceX's YouTube channel. The two GPS III satellites were launched by SpaceX in December 2018 and June 2020, respectively.
Two such cutting-edge satellites have already launched on different Falcon 9 rockets. In the meantime, five more GPS III satellites are in production, according to the company, and three of them are fully built and undergoing tests. That mission also has not yet been rescheduled.
The satellites feature anti-jamming capabilities believed to be eight times more robust than previous versions.
SpaceX has even recently inspired the Russians to produce reusable rockets for the bettering future of space exploration.
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It is worth noting that this week SpaceX is postponing the launch of the launch vehicle for the second time just before the launch itself.
As of now, ULA's NROL-44 Delta IV Heavy launch is entering the sixth week of delays since the mission's first late-August launch attempt and has no firm date set for the next attempt At the same time, during SpaceX's first GPS III SV04 launch attempt, Falcon 9 suffered a rare last-second launch abort due to a propulsion problem that will likely take a week or more to resolve.
These rockets will also subsequently land back on Earth following the missions and they are scheduled to launch sometime next year.
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