SpaceX launches commercial TV satellite for Asia

The US SpaceX company has announced its intention to take a big slice of the market for launching the world’s TV and telecoms satellites.

The California outfit has just launched a new platform for satellite operator SES to serve its growing customer base in India and South East Asia…It is the first time SpaceX has put a satellite in a geostationary transfer orbit, far above the Earth.

The launch took place at Cape Canaveral in Florida…

SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket got up off the pad at 17:41 local time (22:41 GMT) and released the SES-8 platform on its planned trajectory some 33 minutes later…

SpaceX is promising to substantially undercut the existing players on price, and SES, the world’s second largest telecoms satellite operator, believes the incumbents had better take note of the California company’s capability.

The entry of SpaceX into the commercial market is a game-changer – it is going to really shake the industry to its roots,” SES’s chief technical officer Martin Halliwell told BBC News before the launch.

The flight from Cape Canaveral was the seventh mission to date for a Falcon 9.

The progression to longer flights, larger payloads, appears to be doing just fine. At this rate, I expect they’ll land a Tesla on the moon for Chinese astronauts to drive around in.

RTFA for lots more detail, background. I chose one of the longer videos – worth watching.

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