SpaceX successfully launches Falcon 9 rocket months after explosion

After the rocket's nine Merlin 1D engines pass an automated health check, the Falcon 9 is released from Space Launch Complex 4-East at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California.The Falcon 9 rocket reaches Max Q, the point of maximum aerodynamic pressure. These 10 satellites are the first of 72 satellites planned for launch-66 active in the network, and 6 on-hand spares. The launch will be taking place on Saturday, January 14 2017, just a few moments from now.

The company has a seven-flight contract with SpaceX worth $468.1 million and plans to deploy 10 satellites at time. The Falcon9 is carrying 10 communications satellites for the company Iridium to launch into low earth orbit.

The company had planned to launch the rocket a week ago but bad weather forced it to cancel its plans.

On Saturday the Falcon 9 rocket landed successfully on a barge in the Pacific Ocean, the first landing on a new drone ship there, prompting the engineers to burst into cheers.

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SpaceX will return to flight on Saturday morning and launch a rocket into space for the first time since a launchpad explosion last September.

Elon Musk hopes that the upcoming launch, if successful, will put Space Exploration Technologies Corp's (commonly known as SpaceX) ambitious plans back on track.

The financials, which were detailed in the Wall Street Journal, outline how costly a launch setback is for the upstart rocket company.

Since its debut, the Falcon 9 has provided a cheaper rocket than its incumbent competitors, allowing it to gain market share in at their expense. Owing to the recent explosions and launch failures, SpaceX has already missed on several lucrative launches, which would have brought in more than $370million in revenues. "I often think of it as one of the biggest tech refreshes in the world right now, with a new $3 billion constellation".

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"There are so many variables that need to be considered when finalizing launch preparations, and a slight deviation or unexpected behavior by any of them can jeopardize the launch integrity", Smith said.

It is the first private company to complete commercial space missions, including re-supply flights to the International Space Station.

Gwynne Shotwell, president and chief operating officer of SpaceX, said a lot is at stake as the company rolls its new rocket to the launch pad in California. The broader concern is that an explosion could cause customers to lose confidence in the company and shift business elsewhere.

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