July 17, 2019

Photos: Falcon Heavy reaches pad 39A for its first night launch


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SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy rocket rolled out of its hangar and up the ramp to pad 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, then was raised vertical at the seaside launch complex early Monday in preparation for a late-night liftoff with two dozen weather observation and technology demonstration satellites.

The rocket stands 229 feet (70 meters) tall and 40 feet (12.2 meters) wide, made up of three Falcon 9 rocket boosters bolted together to produce more than 5 million pounds of the ground-shaking thrust at liftoff.

The Falcon Heavy is set for launch during a four-hour window opening at 11:30 p.m. EDT Monday (0330 GMT Tuesday) on the Space Test Program-2 mission sponsored by the U.S. Air Force. It will be the third flight of the Falcon Heavy — the world’s most powerful launcher — the first Falcon Heavy launch at night.

See our Mission Status Center for live coverage of the countdown and launch.

Credit: SpaceX
Credit: SpaceX
Credit: SpaceX
Credit: Walter Scriptunas II / Spaceflight Now
Credit: Walter Scriptunas II / Spaceflight Now
Credit: Stephen Clark/Spaceflight Now
Credit: Stephen Clark/Spaceflight Now
Credit: Walter Scriptunas II / Spaceflight Now
Credit: Walter Scriptunas II / Spaceflight Now
Credit: Stephen Clark/Spaceflight Now
Credit: Walter Scriptunas II / Spaceflight Now
Credit: Stephen Clark/Spaceflight Now

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