The planned launch ended with another successSpaceX's Falcon 9 launch vehicle, taken from Cape Canaveral on July 21. A military communications satellite was launched into space, launched in accordance with a contract for South Korea. Also, as a result of the launch, several new records were set, including a minimum break for re-launching reusable rockets.
Launch of the ANASIS-II communication satellite, forThe South Korean military was held under a contract signed by SpaceX back in 2014 with the South Korean Defense Procurement Program Administration (DAPA). ANASIS becomes the first satellite entirely built for the military.
Falcon 9 first stage reuselabeled F9 B5 B1058.2, has allowed Musk to reduce the time between re-launches to a record 51 days. The previous achievement for the fastest return to space belonged to the Atlantis shuttle, lasted 35 years and was 54 days. Then the shuttle was flown in October-November 1985 and the spacecraft was launched from the LC-39A launch pad of the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
First stage F9 B5 B1058.2, after a short maintenance following the successful launch of the manned spacecraft Crew Dragon Demo-2 into orbit, launched from the SLC-40 pad at Cape Canaveral on July 21 at 00:30 Moscow time. Earlier on July 11, Falcon 9 B1058 successfully passed firing tests. Despite the fact that the preparation of the Atlantis spacecraft, created under the Space Shuttle program, is incomparable with the preparation of the reusable first stage of the Falcon 9, the re-launch record is recorded and now belongs to SpaceX.
It is significant that during the preparation for launchFalcon 9 with ANASIS-II on board were moved several times due to problems with the second stage of the rocket, which is almost the only new and disposable part of the rocket. All components prepared for restart were operating as scheduled.
Falcon 9's first stage has landed on the Just Read the Instructions droneship pic.twitter.com/fPbckYFySh
- SpaceX (@SpaceX) July 20, 2020
2.5 minutes after a successful start F9 B5B1058.2 separated the first stage from the rocket, which then splashed down on the floating platform Just Read the Instructions in the Atlantic Ocean, setting another record and becoming the 57th first stage of the Falcon 9 that returned to Earth. The second, one-off stage continued its flight and put ANASIS-II into the planned orbit.
Satellite ANASIS II (Army / Navy / Air Force SatelliteInformation System II) has a mass of 5 to 6 tons and will operate in a geostationary orbit up to 36 thousand km high. The final entry into orbit will be carried out using its own engines. The project is military and highly classified, so no other technical data was disclosed. It is known that the aircraft was developed by Airbus Defense and Space together with Alcatel Space using the Eurostar E3000 platform.
Another achievement related to the withdrawal inspace ANASIS II, was the first successful splashdown and capture with the help of nets of both flaps of the nose fairing of the Falcon 9. The operation was carried out using specialized SpaceX spacecraft called Ms.Tree and Ms.Chief, between which nets were stretched to soften the splashdown of the fairing flaps descending by parachutes. This success will allow SpaceX to continue to reduce the cost of flights in the future, as the cost of the fairing is almost 10% of the cost of manufacturing Falcon 9.