SpaceX launches the Egyptian satellite – Spaceflight Now

Live coverage of the countdown and the launch of the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, Florida. The Falcon 9 rocket will launch the Egyptian communications satellite Nilesat 301. Follow us Twitter.

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SpaceX’s upcoming launch will deploy a Nilesat communications satellite following the launch of a Falcon 9 rocket on Wednesday afternoon from Cape Canaveral. The Falcon 9 is scheduled to launch with the Nilesat 301 communications payload while the window opens at 5:04 PM EST (2104 GMT).

A 229-foot-high Falcon 9 rocket is set to lift off from Platform 40 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida, beginning a 33-minute mission to place the 9,000-pound (4.1 metric tons) Nilesat 301 spacecraft into a spacecraft. An extended transmission orbit that ranges tens of thousands of miles above Earth.

Nilesat 301 is intended for an operational location in a geostationary orbit more than 22,000 miles (nearly 36,000 km) above the equator at 7° West longitude, where it will provide television broadcasting and internet services across Egypt and other parts of Africa and the Middle East. The spacecraft will use its own propulsion system for the final maneuvers to reach its operational orbit.

Wednesday’s launch will be the 23rd Falcon 9 launch of the year, and the first with a satellite heading toward geostationary orbit, a popular location for television broadcasts and a satellite data transmission vehicle. It is also the first real commercial launch into a geostationary transfer orbit around the world this year.

The geostationary satellite launch market was once a lucrative business for launch providers, including SpaceX. But the satellite market has shifted to smaller spacecraft, including towers that fly in low-altitude orbits, to send broadband signals to consumers.

SpaceX operates the Starlink network, the world’s largest fleet of satellites, and other companies are developing and deploying their own towers.

The Nilesat 301 communications satellite is undergoing a solar array diffusion test. Credit: Thales Alenia Space

The Nilesat 301 launch is the first of as many as six Falcon 9 missile flights scheduled for June.

SpaceX will load 1 million pounds of super-cooled kerosene and liquid oxygen propellants into the Falcon 9 for the final 35-minute countdown on Wednesday. The Falcon 9 will switch to internal power and compress the fuel tanks before igniting nine Merlin main engines in a 3-second T-minus.

After passing an automated health check, the computers will require four clamps to open, paving the way for the Falcon 9 to take off from the 40 with 1.7 million pounds of thrust.

The launch time is set to 5:04 PM EDT (2104 GMT) on Wednesday at the opening of a window of two hours and 29 minutes. Forecasters from the US Space Force expect there to be a 60% chance of suitable weather for the launch Wednesday, with the primary concern linked to threatening clouds from nearby thunderstorms.

Once it leaves the plate, Falcon 9 will curve eastward from Cape Canaveral over the Atlantic Ocean and exceed the speed of sound in about one minute. The first stage of the booster will shut off its motors and separate from the Falcon 9’s upper stage at T+ plus 2 minutes 37 seconds.

The booster stage will travel through space for a few minutes before plunging back into the atmosphere to target a rocket-assisted vertical landing on a SpaceX drone ship in the Atlantic about nine minutes after takeoff.

The first stage of the Falcon 9 – tail number B1062 – will fly for the seventh time. It made its debut with the launch of a US military GPS satellite on November 3rd. 5, 2020, and has since launched another GPS payload, the astronauts’ special Inspiration4 and Axiom’s Axiom missions, and two missions carrying Starlink Internet satellites into orbit.

On its six previous flights, the craft has carried 104 satellites and eight people into orbit.

The upper stage of the Falcon 9 will fire its single Merlin engine twice, first to reach a temporary parking orbit, and then to propel Nilesat 301 into a long transfer orbit extending tens of thousands of miles above Earth. Nilesat 301 is scheduled to deploy from the upper stage of the Falcon 9 approximately 33 minutes into the mission.

Built in France by Thales Alenia Space, Nilesat 301 will support HDTV and internet connectivity, replacing the Nilesat 201 spacecraft launched in 2010. The spacecraft is owned by Nilesat, a company controlled by Egyptian government institutions.

missiles: Falcon 9 (B1062.7)

Payloads: Communication satellite Nilesat 301

launch sites: SLC-40, Cape Canaveral Space Station, Florida

Opening dates: 8 June 2022

launch windows: 5:04-7:33 PM EST (2104-2333 GMT)

weather forecast: 60% acceptable weather probability

Recovery from reinforcement: Unmanned ship “just read the instructions”


Orbit goals: geostationary transfer orbit

Launch timeline:

  • T+00:00: take off
  • T+01: 12: maximum air pressure (Max-Q)
  • T+02:34: 1st stage for main engine cut-off (MICU)
  • T+02:37: Separation stage
  • T+02:45: Ignition the engine in the second stage
  • T+03:24: Get rid of the calm
  • T+06:28: Ignition of burning entering the first stage (three engines)
  • T+06:50: First stage entry combustion ends
  • T+08:05: Second stage engine cut-off (SECO 1)
  • T+08:19: 1st stage burner ignition (single engine)
  • T+08:42: First stage landing
  • T+26:56: restart the engine in the second stage
  • T+28:02: Engine cut-off in second stage (SECO 2)
  • T + 33: 13: Chapter 301 on Nilesat

Job stats:

  • The 157th Falcon 9 launch since 2010
  • The 165th launch of the Falcon family since 2006
  • Seventh launch of the Falcon 9 B1062 booster
  • Falcon 9 #137 launched from the Space Coast in Florida
  • Launch of Falcon 9 No. 88 from the 40 . platform
  • 143rd release overall from plate 40
  • Flight 99 of the reused Falcon 9 booster
  • SpaceX’s first launch of Nilesat
  • The 81st Thales Alenia satellite launched by SpaceX
  • Falcon 9 23rd launch in 2022
  • The 23rd launch by SpaceX in 2022
  • The 23rd orbital launch from Cape Canaveral in 2022

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