SpaceX calls off launch of satellites


On Sunday, Space X announced on Twitter that it will send the reusable Falcon 9 booster on its third flight to space tomorrow.

The first stage, meanwhile, was expected to flip around and plunge back into the lower atmosphere for a landing on the deck of the "Of Course I Still Love You" about seven minutes and 45 seconds after launch.

The rocket was originally scheduled to be launched on November 19 but it was delayed to conduct further inspections.

Having now completed three launches in an impressively routine fashion, Falcon 9 B1046 may be on a fast track to become the first SpaceX rocket to launch four or more times in the near future. Another delay was caused by bad weather. No SpaceX rocket has yet flown more than two missions.

The Falcon 9's first stage landed successfully on an off-shore drone ship - the "Just Read The Instructions" - in SpaceX's 32nd recovery of a spent booster.

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The Falcon 9 will carry to orbit 64 spacecraft, in particular 15 Micro satellites and 49 cubesats, for 35 customers from 17 countries.

Almost all of the satellites on SpaceX's payload aim to prove that a combination of smaller, simpler and cheaper satellites can perform the same complex functions as much larger, more expensive satellites.

Hawthorne-based SpaceX again postponed a planned launch of its SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base Sunday for a mission dubbed Spaceflight SSO-A: SmallSat Express.

Some of the satellites are aiming to build an internet network that could support smart devices.

If these proof-of-concept missions are successful, SpaceX - which has mostly relied on contracts with NASA - will be poised to capture a whole new market.