EDITOR’S NOTE: Updated after SpaceX scrubbed Wednesday’s launch attempt.
SpaceX’s second Falcon Heavy rocket is set for liftoff Thursday from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, and the heavy-lift launcher will head on an easterly course over the Atlantic Ocean atop more than 5 million pounds of thrust.
The 229-foot-tall (70-meter) rocket is poised for launch from pad 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida during a launch window Thursday that opens at 6:35 p.m. EDT (2235 GMT) and closes at 8:31 p.m. EDT (0031 GMT).
The payload mounted atop the Falcon Heavy rocket is Arabsat 6A, a communications satellite built by Lockheed Martin for Arabsat, an operator based in Saudi Arabia.
The graphic above illustrates the paths of the Falcon Heavy’s two side boosters, center core stage, and second stage during the rocket’s launch and landing operations. Four different components of the Falcon Heavy will follow trajectories toward different landing zones, or toward Earth orbit.
The timeline below outlines the launch sequence for the Falcon Heavy’s second mission — and first commercial flight.
The Ariane 5 rocket’s weekend launch from French Guiana set a weight record and produced stunning imagery as the powerful 180-foot-tall booster soared into space backdropped by the colorful orange hues of sunset on the edge of the Amazon jungle.
Ground crews towed a towering Ariane 5 rocket to its launch pad in French Guiana on Wednesday for final flight preparations before Thursday’s launch with spacecraft for two of the world’s top commercial satellite operators.
Mounted on a mobile platform, a European Ariane 5 rocket followed dual rail tracks across the Guiana Space Center in South America on the way to its jungle launch complex Monday, a day before its scheduled blastoff with four satellites to expand Europe’s independent navigation network.