Space X Launch Lights Up Bay Area Skies

Posted October 08, 2018

Once again, the light is from a SpaceX launch. "We're all very excited".

Minutes after launch, the rocket's second stage separated from the first-stage booster and continued rising spaceward.

SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket as seen from the North Coast.

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On Sunday night-for the first time since July-SpaceX will attempt to launch a satellite into space, and then land part of the rocket back on its base.

SpaceX has a goal of using the boosters up to ten times with little maintenance, and 100 with refurbishment, as well as being able to relaunch boosters 24 hours after landing. The rocket plume is expected to be illuminated by the sun after the launch at 7:21 p.m. Sunday. Previous re-capture missions from Vandenberg have landed the rocket on a barge floating in the Pacific Ocean, about 400 miles out to sea.

By the way: SpaceX would like to land every booster on terra firma, to ease the reflight process.

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From the ground, Twitter users posted incredible shots of the Falcon 9 coming back to Earth. SpaceX has several other missions planned for this year, including the Falcon 9 launches of another 10 Iridium Next satellites, Es'hailSat's Es'hail-2, and the U.S. Air Force's first GPS-3 satellite. The satellite is created to provide radar imagery to help emergency responders and monitor the environment, including the collection of soil moisture measurements.

"SAOCOM-1, together with the Italian COSMO-SkyMed X-Band SAR constellation, comprise the Italian-Argentine Satellite System for Emergency Management (SIASGE), a partnership between CONAE and the Italian Space Agency (ASI)", SpaceX officials wrote in a mission description.

Known as plume interaction, the phenomena has been known to produce extraordinary visual effects and the launch of SAOCOM 1A was certainly no exception.

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