SpaceX West Coast launch to bring sonic booms to California

08 October, 2018, 10:23 | Author: Harriet Bell
  • SpaceX					SpaceX’s Falcon 9 Block 5 ready for first Return-To-Launch-Site booster landing

SpaceX has flown boosters back to land after launches from Florida but has yet to do so in California.

Shortly afterward SpaceX showed a shot of Falcon 9, successfully landed on landing zone 4.

Baldwin wasn't the only one to capture fantastic views of SpaceX's launch. This will be SpaceX's first landing attempt on the ground at Vandenberg. A sonic boom sounds like an explosion or thunder and is the result of shock waves from a vehicle traveling faster than sound.

"Vandenberg LZ-4, the Falcon has landed", a member of SpaceX's launch team reported.

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The primary goal of the flight was to boost Argentina's SAOCOM 1A satellite into an orbit around Earth's poles, the first of two orbital radar stations capable of "seeing" through clouds and at night to measure soil moisture, a key indicator of crop yields, droughts and floods. 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, make up the Italian-Argentine Satellite System for Emergency Management, or SIASGE.

SAOCOM 1B is planned to launch next year. Between then and now, the company chalked up 10 more successful landings at the Air Force Station and another 18 on off-shore droneships. During previous West Coast launches, it has sent out a ship equipped with a giant net to catch parafoil-equipped components of the nosecone as the descend toward the ocean.

It was a night sky sight so dazzling, the mayor of Los Angeles told everyone not to worry about aliens: a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket streaking into the evening sky, leaving a brilliant glowing plume in its wake.

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