SpaceX satellite launch lights up night sky, social media

09 October, 2018, 04:27 | Author: Dwayne Harmon
  • In this handout image. the NASA  German Research Centre for Geosciences GRACE Follow On spacecraft launch onboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket Tuesday

The twilight launch created a spectacular sight in the night sky for spectators in Southern California, who took to Twitter to share their wonderful photos.

In fact, according to Google trends, quite a lot of people in the tri-state area in California, New Mexico, and Arizona were concerned about ET making an appearance Sunday night.

But, no need to fear.

"Vandenberg, LZ-4, the Falcon has landed", a member of SpaceX's launch team reported. (SpaceX) achieved another milestone by successfully landing its first Falcon 9 rocket back at the California base after around 8 minutes of lift-off.

Later, SpaceX reported that the SAOCOM 1A radar satellite was placed in its proper pole-to-pole orbit.

After it separated from the second stage, the first stage of the Falcon 9 rocket arrested its forward movement, and began falling back toward Earth.

In a move that could cut its costs to launch space hardware even further, SpaceX landed a first-stage booster on a pad at California's Vandenberg Air Force Base on Sunday night. It was also the first West Coast landing of an orbital class rocket booster on land, SpaceX said.

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During the landing attempt residents from Santa Barbara, Ventura and San Luis Obispo counties were warned that they may hear one or more sonic booms.

The satellite is the first of two that will be used for emergency management and for land monitoring.

Californians posted videos and photos of the skies after the successful take-off, including Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti.

SpaceX inaugurated its West Coast rocket-landing pad in style.

"SAOCOM" is short for "Satélite Argentino de Observación Con Microondas", which is Spanish for "Argentine Microwave-Observation Satellite".

The SAOCOM launch marks SpaceX's 17th launch of the year.

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