Another Falcon Heavy Launch Coming Up

B1051 dutifully launched Canada's Radarsats and is now safely back on landing zone LZ-4 at Vandenberg. Unfortunately Vandenberg's familiar fog did obscure the countdown prior to the launch and the first few seconds after ignition, but 1051 quickly lifted above the clouds into the blue sky. The fog once again obscured the last moments of its landing, but touchdown could still be seen through the on-board camera.

The second stage engine has shut down and its orbit has been judged good. As I write this the three Radarsats are still attached to the second stage, awaiting deployment in about half an hour. The SpaceX feed should show that.

Edit: All three Radarsats are deployed.

Here's a room full of Canadians at Natural Resources Canada (in Ottawa?) cheering as the rocket lights up in the fog (it's just a bright diffused light) and then rising from out of the fog bank.

The Canadian Space Agency apparently had a live-feed going too (that I didn't know about) with their own commentary. The video below doesn't seem to include the launch, but covers the deployment. (Filling in a lot of the time between launch and deployment when SpaceX was off the air, just playing music.) They give us more information about how the satellites will position themselves, deploy their antennae and solar arrays and phone home. They say that this set-up phase will take something like five days.

After a woman provides this sort of information, a man alternates with her making weird gibberish sounds for a while. (Don't try to figure it out, it's a Canadian thing.)
A factoid that I just learned... the total cost of all three Radarsats totalled more than $1 billion, making this the most expensive total payload that SpaceX has ever launched. The fact that it appears to have gone off flawlessly adds to SpaceX's reputation for reliability.

Here's B1051 emerging from the fog on its way to space (SpaceX photo)

[Image: D83gGIlV4Ag_h5c.jpg]

The almost instant Teslarati news story

Video of first Radarsat deploying

and the second...

Here's a SpaceX photo of B1051 back in the thick wet fog at LZ-4 after putting the three Radarsats into space. A zero-visibility landing... but what does B1051 care, it doesn't have eyes... As they say: "No visibility, no problem!"

[Image: D83h6Y8UIAE2Wlz?format=jpg&name=small]

And back at Boca Chica... they are busily polishing the second of their two spaceships. (There's a third, much shinier, one in Cocoa FL across a canal from Cape Canaveral). The size of the little men next to it gives an indication of the scale.

And the latest from BCG about SpaceX placing giant marshmallows on top of the Hopper. (They are the COPVs with their red plastic covers removed and covered in thick white insulating paint.) Still no engine.

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