Published: Mon, January 08, 2018
Research | By Clarence Powell

How To Watch SpaceX Launch The US Government's Mysterious Zuma Spacecraft Today

How To Watch SpaceX Launch The US Government's Mysterious Zuma Spacecraft Today

SpaceX has confirmed that its rocket, and the undisclosed national security payload, are ready for launch, and weather conditions appear to be generally favorable. It's likely the feed will go live around 7:45pm ET, a few minutes prior to the launch window.

About 8 minutes later, the first stage of the Falcon 9 rocket came in for a lovely night landing at a launch pad back at the Cape.

Sunday temperatures will start out in the low 50s near the Cape Canaveral Air Force pad, with colder temperatures further inland.

SpaceX's first mission of 2018 has more than its share of mystery.

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SpaceX says its Falcon 9 rocket"performed nominally after Sunday's launch

The webcast of the launch did not follow the second stage carrying the payload after it separated from the first stage.

Sunday's launch will also include a landing attempt of the Falcon 9's first stage at Landing Zone 1. (SpaceX has had 17 consecutive successful landings, so they're getting pretty good at this). But Sunday's launch is perhaps the company's most secretive yet. So it's certainly not unlikely that it's designed for military or intelligence purposes; per USA Today, amateur satellite watchers have speculated Zuma is related to earlier launches of spacecraft that appeared to be surveilling other spaceborne objects.

Elon Musk's SpaceX is set to once again launch its mysterious Zuma mission January 5, after it was pushed back last November.

The Zuma mission was first revealed to the public in October, when NASA reported that SpaceX has requested authorization for the mysterious "Mission 1390".

More news: DOJ Taking Yet Another Look At Hillary Clinton's Private Email Server

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