SpaceX president confirms successful launch of government spy satellite Zuma

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Usually to launch satellites on Falcon 9 SpaceX used the adapters, and fairings of their own production, although official guidance on useful load for the Falcon 9 it is noted that the adapter may be provided by the manufacturer of the satellite.

These reports are partially based upon a briefing supposedly given to lawmakers and congressional staffers indicating that the satellite did not separate from the rocket as planned.

She continued: "Falcon Heavy has been rolled out to launchpad LC-39A for a static fire later this week, to be followed shortly thereafter by its maiden flight".

SpaceX on Sunday blasted off a secretive United States government payload known as Zuma, a mission whose nature - and the agency behind it - remains a mystery.

But Shotwell reiterated in a statement Tuesday morning that "after review of all data to date, Falcon 9 did everything correctly on Sunday night".

The Falcon 9 rocket was able to make a successful powered landing back on the ground after separating from the upper stage. The satellite for the secret mission was built by Northrop Grumman Corp. These rumors are all the more interesting because we have no idea what Zuma was for or even what government agency was going to operate the satellite.


The satellite launch was SpaceX's third national security mission, and another step toward potentially high-paying contracts through the Department of Defense, Ars Technica. The company chose SpaceX as the launch provider, noting late a year ago that it took "great care to ensure the most affordable and lowest risk scenario for Zuma".

The Falcon 9 with Zuma kicked off on 8 January 2018 to 04:00 Moscow time from the cosmodrome on Cape Canaveral.

"The most important issue here is whether the Pentagon will rethink its reliability as a provider of launch services", said Thompson, whose think tank receives funding from Boeing and Lockheed.

Northrup Grumman, the maker of the payload, said it was for the U.S. government and would be delivered to low-Earth orbit, but offered no other details. While SpaceX maintains that the Falcon 9 launch vehicle performed as expected, it appears that the satellite isn't functioning. Another Falcon 9, meanwhile, is scheduled to fly in three weeks with a communication satellite for Luxembourg.

Shotwell said in a statement that since no rocket changes are warranted for upcoming flights, the company's launch schedule remains on track.

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