After experiencing a failed launch in September last year when a Falcon 9 rocket exploded during a pre-launch test on the pad at Cape Canaveral, SpaceX has successfully launched the Falcon 9 rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.
The launch also resulted in a successful recovery of the Falcon 9 rocket’s first stage, which marks the seventh time SpaceX has succeed in landing this stage back for potential later re-use. SpaceX’s second-stage also successfully reached low-earth orbit, where it will begin the next stage of the mission, deploying Iridium’s 10 satellites.
This is a very crucial launch for SpaceX and Iridium, as it is the first step towards completing a constellation of 70-plus satellites that will blanket the Earth with coverage in network for voice and data communication. It is also a good one for SpaceX as they schedule more launch plans and will likely help in getting new deals with NASA, satellite makers and other organizations.