SpaceX will launch an Italian satellite today in a mission that has suffered several delays due to bad weather. Conditions at the launch site in Florida are looking promising today, so we’ve got the details on how to watch the launch.
Typically for SpaceX, various parts of the rocket are being re-used from previous missions. “The Falcon 9 first stage booster supporting this mission previously supported the launch of Arabsat-6A and STP-2. After stage separation, Falcon 9 will return to Earth and land on Landing Zone 1 (LZ-1) at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station,” SpaceX writes. “One half of the fairings supporting this mission previously supported Transporter-1, Transporter-2, and one Starlink mission, and the other half previously supported SAOCOM 1B, Transporter-2, and one Starlink mission. ”
What to expect from the launch
SpaceX will use one of its Falcon 9 rockets launched from Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station to carry an Earth observation satellite into orbit. The mission for the Italian Space Agency will launch a COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation 2 satellite to add to the COSMO-SkyMed satellite constellation.
The launch has had to be pushed back twice so far. It had originally been scheduled for Thursday, Friday 27, and then was rescheduled to yesterday, Friday, January 28. In both cases, it had been delayed due to weather conditions at the launch site. “Standing down from today’s launch of COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation FM2 due to poor weather conditions at the launch site tonight; next opportunity is tomorrow, January 29 at 6:11 p.m. EST,” SpaceX tweeted.
There is another SpaceX launch planned for this weekend as well. A Starlink launch was also pushed back to allow for this change in schedule. “This shift sets up back-to-back targeted Falcon 9 launches in Florida this weekend with our next Starlink mission set to lift off from LC-39A on Sunday, January 30,” SpaceX tweeted.
How to watch the launch
SpaceX will livestream the launch today, so you can watch along at home. The livestream will cover final launch preparations, liftoff, ascent and first stage separation, second stage ignition, fairing deployment, and payload separation. In addition, it will show the entry burn and catching of the first stage.
Coverage begins 15 minutes before launch, so just before 6 p.m. ET (3 p.m. PT) today, Saturday, January 29. You can watch the livestream either by heading to SpaceX’s YouTube page or by using the video embedded at the top of this page.