For the first word in all things privatized space, people are turning to SpaceX. Behind the work of Elon Musk and his shared work with NASA, the company has made huge strides in recent years. Now, SpaceX is setting their sights on February 6th, 2018 in order to make their biggest step yet. SpaceX will be priming and launching the Falcon Heavy rocket for the first time. Let’s dig deep into this launch news because it has some pretty far-reaching effects for the entire industry.
The maiden flight for SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy finally has a launch date and it picked up a rather historic launching pad, too. The Falcon Heavy will be taking off from the Kennedy Space Center located in Cape Canaveral, FL and it will be using Launch Pad 39A. This launching pad is particularly historic because NASA used it for the Apollo moon missions as well as their space shuttle launches.
The announcement of the Feb 6 launch came just a few days after SpaceX launched their first test firings of the Falcon Heavy’s personal, 27 first-stage engines for the first time ever. Musk took to Twitter to break the news saying, “Aiming for first flight of Falcon Heavy on Feb. 6 from Apollo launchpad 39A at Cape Kennedy.” Musk went on to suggest that locals get out and watch the launch due to the “easy viewing” available from the nearby public causeway. We don’t think that Musk needed to advise space fans to come watch as people will no doubt be coming from miles away to watch it in first person.
Right now there is no official launch window for the Falcon Heavy’s first launch but expectations are that it will occur sometime around 1:30PM EST. There is a three-hour window during this time span that NASA and Musk could embrace in order to get the rocket off of the ground.
For space fans not in the know, the Falcon Heavy will be the most intimidating and powerful rocket to take flight since the Saturn V rocket which was launched by NASA. The Falcon Heavy is comprised of a trio of Falcon 9 cores that will be returning to our planet after lunch. The Falcon Heavy is 230 feet tall and can carry payloads that total nearly 120,000lbs. The Falcon Heavy is easily doubling up the payload of its nearest competitor, the Delva IV Heavy which was built by United Launch Alliance