Live show: SpaceX to send PSN 6 satellite, lunar lander into orbit
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — SpaceX is set to launch its first Falcon 9 from the East Coast in 2019. It will see three payloads orbited, including a commercially-funded lunar lander.
Liftoff is currently targeting 8:45 p.m. EST Feb. 21 (01:45 UTC Feb. 22) from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. The launch window is 32 minutes long and the weather is expected to have an 80 percent chance of favorable conditions.
The primary payload for the flight is the Nusantara Satu satellite, also known as PSN 6. It was built by SSL and is managed by Indonesian satellite operator PT Pasifik Satelit Nusantara. The two secondary payloads include a small spacecraft for the U.S. Air Force Research Lab as well as a four-legged lunar lander named Beresheet (Hebrew for “in the beginning”), which represents not only the first privately-funded spacecraft to aim for the Moon, but is also Israel’s first spacecraft designed to land on the lunar surface.
SpaceFlight Insider is planning a live broadcast starting at 8:15 p.m. EST, about 30 minutes before liftoff.
Derek Richardson has a degree in mass media, with an emphasis in contemporary journalism, from Washburn University in Topeka, Kansas. While at Washburn, he was the managing editor of the student run newspaper, the Washburn Review. He also has a blog about the International Space Station, called Orbital Velocity. He met with members of the SpaceFlight Insider team during the flight of a United Launch Alliance Atlas V 551 rocket with the MUOS-4 satellite. Richardson joined our team shortly thereafter. His passion for space ignited when he watched Space Shuttle Discovery launch into space Oct. 29, 1998. Today, this fervor has accelerated toward orbit and shows no signs of slowing down. After dabbling in math and engineering courses in college, he soon realized his true calling was communicating to others about space. Since joining SpaceFlight Insider in 2015, Richardson has worked to increase the quality of our content, eventually becoming our managing editor. @TheSpaceWriter