A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket fired through a dense shroud of coastal fog and climbed into orbit Wednesday from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, deploying a trio of radar observation satellites to begin a $900 million mission surveying the Arctic, maritime waters, forests and farmland for the Canadian government.
A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifted off from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California at 10:17:10 a.m. EDT (7:17:10 a.m. PDT; 1417:10 GMT) Wednesday with the Radarsat Constellation Mission for the Canadian government. The Falcon 9’s first stage successfully landed back at Vandenberg around eight minutes later.
A Soyuz FG rocket thundered to life and shot into orbit smoothly Monday carrying three crew members on a six-hour flight to the International Space Station. The problem-free ascent came less than two months after an Oct. 11 launch abort that forced a different crew to carry out safe-but-scary emergency landing.