On Sunday, SpaceX successfully launched one of its Falcon 9 carrier rockets with a US intelligence satellite on board, live-streaming the event.
The rocket launch took off from the Vandenberg Air Force Base in California at 9:13 am local time (9:43 pm IST).
The NROL-85 mission for the US National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) is being sent into space by a rocket. The specifics of the operation have not been revealed.
The rocket’s first stage has already come down in the area surrounding the launch pad. Its second launch, like its first, was used to loft a spy satellite into space.
The NRO is a government organization established by the United States that designs, builds, deploys, and runs espionage satellites for the US intelligence community and the Department of Defense.
The company’s first private space mission was successfully launched last week, with the assistance of Houston-based startup Axiom Space.
The four-member all-private crew of the Axiom Mission 1 (Ax-1) was headed by former NASA astronaut Michael Lopez-Alegria, who had previously flown in space four times. On board the ISS, the Ax-1 team was met by the Expedition 67 crew.
By 2031, the ISS is expected to be deactivated, and NASA hopes that a privately funded station will be able to replace it. The Axiom astronauts will spend approximately 10 days in space before returning to Earth.