Orbital Test Bed
More photos from SpaceX’s first Falcon Heavy night launch
The predawn launch from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center of a Falcon Heavy rocket June 25 was the first nighttime liftoff of SpaceX’s heavy-lifter, the most powerful launcher currently operational anywhere in the world. The Falcon Heavy’s two side boosters returned to Cape Canaveral less than nine minutes later.
Photos: Falcon Heavy lights up Florida’s Space Coast
Falcon Heavy launches on military-led rideshare mission, boat catches fairing
SpaceX’s third Falcon Heavy rocket took off from the Kennedy Space Center in a predawn launch Tuesday, delivering two dozen research and weather observation spacecraft into orbit on a marathon three-and-a-half mission for the U.S. Air Force. The mission included the successful landing of the Falcon Heavy’s two side boosters back at Cape Canaveral, and a SpaceX recovery boat netted part of the rocket’s payload fairing for the first time.
Watch a video replay of the Falcon Heavy’s first night launch
This video replay shows the liftoff of SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy rocket from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida with 5.1 million pounds of thrust, followed by the nearby landing of the launcher’s twin side boosters nine minutes later. The rocket’s center core missed a landing attempt on SpaceX’s offshore drone ship.
Launch timeline for Falcon Heavy’s first launch for the U.S. Air Force
NASA technology experiments hitching a ride on SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy rocket
Photos: Falcon Heavy reaches pad 39A for its first night launch
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.
Live coverage: SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy lifts off from Kennedy Space Center
SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy rocket lifted off from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida at 2:30 a.m. EDT (0630 GMT) to begin a three-and-a-half hour mission to deliver two dozen satellites into three distinct orbits. The Falcon Heavy’s two side boosters returned to Cape Canaveral for successful landings, but the center core stage crashed during a landing attempt on SpaceX’s drone ship in the Atlantic Ocean.