Favorable weather for SpaceX launch of Turkish satellite from Space Coast on Saturday


CAP CANAVERAL, Florida – Space Force forecasters predict favorable conditions for the launch of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and Turkish communications satellite this weekend.

According to News 6 Florida Today partners, conditions around Cape Canaveral Space Station Launch Complex 40, according to space launch Delta 45, are expected to be 80% for take-off at 10:58 p.m. ET on Saturday. Teams will have a 90-minute window to launch the 230-foot rocket.

Risks posed by upper winds and conditions in the Atlantic Ocean for the recovery of a drone were both rated as “low risk”. The temperature should hover around a comfortable 69 degrees on takeoff.

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If the launch is postponed to Sunday for technical or planning reasons, conditions drop to 60% “go” due to the forecast for thick clouds. Take-off would take place at or around the same time.

For this launch, spectators should note that the trajectory will be different from the typical northeast flight path: after take-off, the Falcon 9 will rotate the engines and fly straight east over the Atlantic. to eventually bring Turksat-5B into a geostationary orbit about 22,200 miles above Earth.

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The approximately 10,000-pound satellite is the last subcontracted spacecraft to Turkey, which was built by Airbus Defense and Space in France. Officials recently said that some communication components are being produced nationally in Turkey for integration into 5B.

The satellite will be used for commercial and government purposes and will provide some services to neighboring countries in the Middle East, Africa and Europe.

The gradual shift to domestic production paves the way for Turksat 6A and 6B, the country’s first handcrafted satellites. Both are also expected to launch from Florida on Falcon 9 rockets from 2023.

Launch on Saturday, December 18

  • Rocket: SpaceX Falcon 9

  • Mission: Turksat-5B communication satellite

  • Launch time: 10:58 p.m. ET

  • Launch window: until 12:28 a.m. ET

  • Launch Complex: 40 at Cape Canaveral Space Station

  • Trajectory: East

  • Landing: Drone ship

  • Weather: 80% “go”

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