Falcon 9 - Iridium Flight 4
SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket is set for a post-sunset liftoff from California with the next ten Iridium-NEXT communications satellites that will push the Iridium replacement effort beyond its halfway point with forty upgraded satellites in orbit after the mission. The fourth Iridium flight of the year will mark the 18th final Falcon 9 to launch in 2017, closing a record-setting year for SpaceX.
Iridium-4 is the first mission for Iridium employing a flight-proven first stage, featuring Falcon 9 Booster 1036 that lifted the Iridium 11-20 satellites into orbit in June 2017.
Mobile Satellite Communications provider Iridium is undertaking the most expansive satellite constellation upgrade to date, replacing the entire 66-satellite constellation, ten at a time. The replacement effort will enhance Iridium's global communications infrastructure by boosting capacity and adding new services.
Live Video by SpaceX
|Launch Date: December 23, 2017||Launch Updates|
|Time: 01:27:23 UTC||Iridium-NEXT Overview|
|Launch Site: SLC-4E, Vandenberg||Falcon 9 FT|
|Launch Vehicle: Falcon 9 FT||Countdown Timeline|
|Payload: 10 Iridium-NEXT (860kg each)||Launch Profile|
|Ascent Duration: 72 Minutes||SpaceX Archive|
|Target Orbit: 615 x 625 km, 86.66°|