Lost in the hubbub of “everything else” going on in our lives the last week or so, SpaceX is scheduled to launch its Falcon 9 rocket today at 3:55 p.m. from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.
The is the first U.S. Space Force mission. On board the SpaceX Falcon 9 is the third GPS III satellite part of a constellation of 10 improved satellites for the military. This launch was rescheduled from April due to coronavirus concerns, but 45th Space Wing Brig. Gen. Doug Schiess thinks the safety protocols they have in place have been working and they continue to take precautions.
There is a 15-minute launch window, and the weather is 60 percent favorable for launch. The backup launch opportunity will be on Wednesday at 3:51 p.m., but the weather is expected to be only 40 percent favorable with a higher chance of rain or obscuring clouds.
Following separation, SpaceX will land Falcon 9’s first stage on the “Just Read the Instructions” droneship, stationed in the Atlantic. The spacecraft will deploy approximately 1 hour and 29 minutes after liftoff.
If the mission is successful, it will be SpaceX’s fourth launch in a little over 4 weeks and the 11th launch of 2020. You can watch the launch webcast here, starting about 15 minutes before liftoff.