SpaceX launch planned for Monday night

SpaceX Falcon 9 set to carry Inmarsat-5 F4 satellite into space

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket blasted into a handsome blue sky over Florida's Atlantic Coast Monday night, hauling a "behemoth" commercial communications satellite from Kennedy Space Center.

SpaceX has gained acclaim for its success at recovering the expensive rockets for re-use in future missions. Monday's flight was the second this year in which a landing was ruled out by the weight and orbital requirements of the satellite payload.

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The rocket will carry a massive telecoms satellite for the British company Inmarsat, which will be added to Inmarsat's network of satellites already in space that beam broadband internet to ships at sea and airplanes that provide in-air Wi-Fi.

"Inmarsat-5 F4 (I-5 F4) will boost the power of our award-winning Global Xpress network, which has been delivering seamless, high-speed broadband connectivity across the world since December 2015", the London-based mobile satellite services provider said in a statement. During that time, it appeared that the EchoStar launch would be SpaceX's last expendable mission.

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This was SpaceX's sixth launch so far this year, its 34th Falcon 9 flight overall and the seventh since a Falcon 9 exploded on its Cape Canaveral Air Force Base launch pad September 1. A later engine burn successfully put Inmarsat-5 F4 into its proper orbit for spacecraft separation.

The integrated Falcon 9/Inmarsat-5 F4 were rolled out to the KSC launch pad on Sunday to begin final preparations and were erected at the pad this morning for Monday's liftoff.

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The next SpaceX launch is sending supplies to the International Space Station, slated for early June. The payload is too heavy. It's the private company's 6th successful flight this year. The weather also looks like it won't be interfering with the much-anticipated launch of Falcon 9. It is hoped that latest satellite will increase the load handling capacity and bring succor if one of the three satellites was having trouble.

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