Airbus-built SES-12 dual-mission satellite successfully launched

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The Falcon 9 rocket blasted off early Monday from Cape Canaveral, Florida.

The last launch the Falcon 9's first stage embarked on happened in September past year; the booster launched the U.S Air Force's robotic X-37B space plane. This satellite will provide video, data, and other communications services across the Asia-Pacific region and the Middle East.

The launch was, of course, the highlight of the event but the breathtaking photos that followed were the real winners.

The satellite could help beam TV programming directly to more than 18 million Asia-Pacific homes together with sister satellite SES-8, which SpaceX launched in 2013.

SpaceX will not send tourists around the Moon this year as previously announced, and will delay the project until the middle of next year, U.S. media reported on Monday, June 4.

SES was the first company to fly a spacecraft on a used Falcon 9 rocket booster.

Falcon 9's first stage for the SES-12 mission previously supported the OTV-5 mission from Launch Complex 39A in September 2017. SpaceX won't attempt to recover the first stage after the launch.

Martin Halliwell, Chief Technology Officer at SES said, "More content".

'So five seconds more to burn, a little bit more fuel, and it completely changes the dynamics of the project'.

"Once operational Crew Dragon missions are under way for NASA, SpaceX will launch the private mission on a journey to circumnavigate the Moon and return to Earth", SpaceX said in a statement.

Storm clouds delayed the liftoff 16 minutes from the opening of the four-hour window at 12:29 a.m. The launch was initially scheduled for June 1, 2018.

No attempt was made to land the booster after its second flight. The original plan was for SpaceX's Falcon Heavy rocket to power the mission, but Musk said a few months ago that the company would probably use its "Big F-ing Rocket" (BFR) instead. Weighing 5,400kg at launch, it has an electrical power of 19kW and will operate in geostationary orbit at the 95° East location for a planned service life of more than 15 years.

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