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SPACEX LAUNCHES ASIASAT 8 TELECOMMUNICATIONS SATELLITE TO GTO
In the early morning hours of Tuesday, August 5th, SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket lifted off from Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral, carrying the AsiaSat 8 satellite for Asia Satellite Telecommunications Company Limited (AsiaSat). The rocket lifted off at 4:00am EDT and delivered AsiaSat 8 to its target 185 x 35786 km geosynchronous transfer orbit at 24.3 degrees.
This marks the eleventh successful flight in a row for Falcon 9, and will be followed shortly by launch of AsiaSat 6 later this month.
Below is a mission summary in pictures.
Falcon 9 and the encapsulated payload mated together in SpaceX’s hangar, days before launch.On Monday, August 4th, Falcon 9 rolled out to the launch pad in preparation for liftoff later that night.Falcon 9, with encapsulated payload attached, is raised vertically in advance of launch.At 4:00am EDT on Tuesday, August 5th, Falcon 9 lifted off from LC-40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida.At liftoff, Falcon 9 put out 1.3 million pounds of thrust, rising to 1.5 million pounds as the rocket climbed out of Earth’s atmosphere.Approximately 176 seconds into flight, the first and second stages separated.
Shortly after, Falcon 9’s second-stage Merlin vacuum engine ignited to begin a five minute, 33 second burn to bring the satellite to a parking orbit.The payload fairing deployed early in this burn.26 minutes into flight, the second stage relit for just over one minute to deliver the payload to its geosynchronous transfer orbit. The payload was deployed into its target orbit successfully approximately 33 minutes into flight. Falcon 9 met 100% of mission objectives.