Published: Wed, March 07, 2018
Worldwide | By Victor Meyer

SpaceX Hispasat Launch: Everything to Know About the Satellite

SpaceX Hispasat Launch: Everything to Know About the Satellite

The Hispasat 30W-6 satellite, set to begin a 15-year telecommunications mission, deployed from the upper stage of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket around 33 minutes after liftoff from Cape Canaveral Tuesday.

The rocket will carry with it a satellite for the 25-year-old Spanish communications operator Hispasat.

Hispasat 30W-6 will operate alongside Hispasat 30W-5, which was formerly Hispasat-1E, providing services including television broadcasting, internet and corporate networking solutions in Europe, the Mediterranean and South America. SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said the satellite is almost the size of a city bus. Thus, space enthusiasts can watch it online on SpaceX's website which has already displayed the upcoming launch on March 6.

But SpaceX did not attempt to land Falcon 9's booster Tuesday due to unfavorable weather in the recovery area off Florida's Atlantic coast, said a company statement. Since its inaugural flight, the Falcon 9 has beefed up and added thruster power, making it one of the most capable launch systems in the aerospace industry.

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Hispasat was first formed in 1989 and its first satellite, Hispasat 1A, launched on an Ariane 4 rocket in 1992. In the hyperconnected world in which we live, access to quality broadband is an essential need for economic, social and even personal development, and this satellite fulfils this need in places other technologies can not reach. A second firing was required to put Hispasat 30W-6 into the required highly elliptical "transfer" orbit. Satellites in such "geostationary" orbits take 24 hours to compete one trip around the planet and thus appear stationary in the sky - a critical requirement for communications stations.

That's up from 18 missions in 2017.

The Falcon 9 rocket of SpaceX just got launched from Cape Canaveral.

The satellite was built by Space Systems Loral and sports 40 Ku-band transponders, seven Ka beams and 10 C-band transponders, according to SpaceX mission's overview.

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