Impressive launch of Falcon 9 distracted viewers from the failure of the SLS rocket

Last Saturday, September 3, tens of thousands of people gathered on the Florida Space Coast to witness the launch of the Space Launch System (SLS) – the most powerful rocket that NASA once created. It is a pity that the megarocket did not move from its place – the start was postponed to October.

SpaceX Falcon 9 launch. Photo: Unsplash

The first launch attempt on Monday, August 29, was canceled just 40 minutes before NASA’s next-generation SLS rocket was supposed to take off from the Kennedy Space Center. Engineers discovered a problem in one of the rocket’s engines, which delayed the launch. The second attempt was to take place on Saturday, September 3. But engineers noticed a dangerous leak of liquid hydrogen. Now the next start will take place no earlier than next month.

Therefore, the eyewitnesses who came to watch the rocket launch and stayed there until Sunday evening, in the end did not become disappointed. On the evening of September 4, SpaceX launched its Falcon 9 workhorse from the Kennedy Space Center as part of the deployment of the next batch of satellites for its Starlink Internet service. Together with Starlink, the rocket “took” Arabsat-6A, STP-2 and COSMO-SkyMed satellites of another generation into orbit.

Of course, the launch of the Falcon 9 was not as impressive as the audience had hoped for in the event of an SLS takeoff, because the SpaceX rocket develops thrust 5 times less than the NASA megarocket: 770 tons versus 4000 tons. But those who watched the space launch for the first time were still amazed by the incredible sight of a SpaceX rocket rising into space. This sight will make some people return next month to observe the launch of NASA’s SLS.

Falcon 9 is a reusable rocket, the first stage of which independently returns to the landing platform after a successful takeoff. During Sunday’s mission, the launch vehicle was expected to automatically land on a platform that had been placed in advance in the Atlantic Ocean. The landing was the 140th successful landing of a SpaceX orbital-class rocket and the 40th launch of Elon Musk’s company in 2022. 

Earlier, we reported on how SpaceX accomplished an incredible feat in the space industry.

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