U.S.

Watch Live: SpaceX Launch of GPS Air Force Satellite to Space Delayed Again

Update 8:15 a.m.: SpaceX announced Wednesday morning that the launch of the GPS III SV01 would be delayed again so that teams could further evaluate the first stage sensors. There was no backup launch date scheduled as of Wednesday.

Original:

After a delay from Tuesday, SpaceX was scheduled to launch the first ever Global Positioning System III space vehicle (SV), or GPS III SV, for the United States Air Force.

Wednesday’s launch window opens at 9:07 a.m. EST and is scheduled to last 26 minutes. The live stream typically starts about 15 minutes before the launch window opens and is available on the SpaceX website as well as on YouTube, or below.

The launch is scheduled to happen from Space Launch Complex 40 at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. The Kennedy Space Center’s Visitor Complex was selling tickets to the launch and was advising visitors to arrive early to get in place before the launch.

About an hour and 56 minutes after a successful liftoff the satellite is expected to be deployed to medium Earth orbit. The GPS is used for “positioning, navigation, and timing services supporting vital U.S. and allied operations worldwide, and underpins critical financial, transportation, and agricultural infrastructure that billions of users have come to depend on daily,” according to SpaceX.

The new satellite will augment the set of current satellites that make up the system. The company does not plan to try and recover the first stage of the Falcon 9 rocket it’s using to launch the satellite.

The launch was scrubbed last minute on Tuesday. SpaceX tweeted, “SpaceX team called a hold due to an out of family reading on first stage sensors. Vehicle and payload remain healthy; next launch attempt is tomorrow at 9:07 EST, 14:07 UTC.” It’s unclear when the next window after Wednesday will be if that launch window doesn’t work out.

Before the scheduled launch time on Tuesday NASA Administrator, Jim Bridenstine tweeted about the launch. He said the company would be using its Falcon 9 Block 5 to launch the satellite and added that it was the same equipment that SpaceX would be using to launch astronauts to the International Space Station come 2019.

SpaceX is contacted under NASA for commercial resupply missions to the ISS as well as crewed missions to bring astronauts to and from the station. In January, SpaceX is expected to conduct the demonstration of its launch to the ISS using the Dragon craft. It’s not scheduled to do a crewed mission demonstration until June of next year.

spacex on launch complex 40 2012 Surrounded by four lightning suppression system towers, the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket stands at Space Launch Complex-40 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida in May 2012. NASA/Jim Grossmann