FAA Gives SpaceX Approval; Relaunch Postponed To MondayBy Emily Marks, UniversityHerald Reporter
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has finally given Elon Musk and SpaceX the go signal to resume launches for its Falcon 9 rocket. The relaunch, which has previously been scheduled on Sunday, Jan. 8, has been moved to Monday, Jan. 9.
Local news source Noozhawk reported that the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will have to wait one day more at the Vandenberg Air Force Base. The mission is set to continue this coming Monday.
The one-day delay has also changed the launch time, which will now happen a few minutes earlier than the previous schedule. This is to make sure that the Iridium satellites are placed in the right place in space.
In an update on its official website, SpaceX confirmed that the cause of the Falcon 9 rocket explosion has been determined. Officials of the FAA, the U.S. Air Force (USAF), the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) worked with industry experts to investigate the incident.
SpaceX was required to ground all of its vehicles after the Falcon 9 rocket explosion on Sep. 1. Elon Musk's space company previously confirmed that the Falcon 9's expected return to flight will be on Jan. 8.
According to CNN, the FAA released a statement on Friday confirming that it has granted a license to SpaceX. Elon Musk's company applied for a license to launch the Iridium NEXT satellites.
SpaceX has already loaded up 10 Iridium satellites which will be acting as relay stations for the telecom's mobile voice and data network. It was reported that the 10 satellites from Iridium are the first out of 81 spacecraft that the company will be sending to space.
Iridium CEO Matt Desch said in a statement that the company has been "anxiously waiting launch day." He also shared how excited they all were to send the first 10 Iridium NEXT satellites into orbit.