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Elon Musk's SpaceX successfully launches satellite for EchoStar, SES

12 October 2017

For a nascent technology offering as complex as a reused rocket, this ought to assuage any doubts that SpaceX is not utterly committed to its pursuit of affordable access to orbit by way of launch vehicle reusability. The rocket took off from Kennedy Space Center in Florida, carrying a satellite with a dual-purpose mission for both EchoStar and SES.

The rocket being used for Wednesday's launch was previously used in February for an International Space Station supply mission. SpaceX successfully launched a recycled rocket component for the first time in March in a bid to make the rocket travels more affordable and cut down the cost of highly expensive rocket components.

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After reaching orbit, the second stage fired its rocket engine to maneuver into the proper orbit for deployment of the Echostar 105/SES-11 satellite. This will be the third occasion ever that Musk's company launches a "flight proven" booster, a term they use to refer to previously-flown components. Musk, SpaceX's chief executive officer, has championed reusability- once derided as a insane idea-to lower launch costs and win a growing roster of customers. "One of our core strategies is to offer new services that are either flat out impossible or not easily replicated by more traditional "bent pipe" and geostationary systems".

The latest Falcon 9 rocket launch marks the third time when the company has successfully launched and landed a rocket that had already flown.

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SpaceX is preparing for its second rocket launch of the week Wednesday evening.

EchoStar-105/SES-11 is a 5,200-kilogram telecommunications satellite from European manufacturer Airbus Defence and Space with 24 C-band and 24 Ku-band transponders.

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