Space X to launch rocket carrying a vehicle to orbit Mars

Запущенный SpaceX секретный спутник упал в океан

This was SpaceX' s third classified mission for the USA government, a lucrative customer.

It is noted that the device, built by Northrop Grumman, has not reached the calculated height and could not be separated from the second stage of the Falcon 9 rocket.

A senior scientist at the Union of Concerned Scientists, Laura Grego, showed concern that the satellite might have stopped functioning near the orbit or failed to separate from the rocket during the second half of the mission.

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"... the main goal of tonight's flight was getting Zuma aloft, so the spacecraft can start going about its business".

As for Northrop Grumman, the manufacturer of the Zuma satellite, it simply added "we can not comment on classified missions". "However, at the moment the data metrics indicate that the Falcon 9 performs its task formally", - said the representative of SpaceX, James Gleason. If we or others find otherwise based on further review, we will report it immediately. The spokesman for the corporation said that the company isn't at liberty to comment on a classified mission.

SpaceX is the commercial launch service formed by Elon Musk, who is also CEO of Tesla. The company has recently ramped up its launch pace, even launching two missions from opposite coasts within about 48 hours.

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The company has been preparing to launch its new Falcon Heavy rocket, which is made up of three Falcon 9 engine cores. SpaceX has a six-hour window - from 1 p.m.to 7 p.m. - to fuel and test the 230-foot-tall rocket.

SpaceX has launched national security payloads in the past, including a spy satellite for the National Reconnaissance Office, and an X-37B space plane for the US Air Force.

All eyes will turn to the first launch, in late January, of SpaceX's, which would become the most powerful operational rocket in the world, carrying twice as much as its nearest competitor, the Delta IV Heavy.

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