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Washington (AFP) – The American company SpaceX has taken off Tuesday from Florida its heavy launcher Falcon Heavy, the most powerful operational rocket in the world currently, for its first launch since 2019.
She took off around 9:40 am local time since the 39a shooting of the Kennedy space center, during a mission called USSF-44, and carrying cargoes on behalf of the American space force, including a satellite named Tetra 1.
A few minutes after takeoff, the two extra propellers of the rocket returned to land on earth. The central floor will not be recovered.
The Falcon Heavy rocket had stolen for the first time during a test in 2018, then transporting the Tesla car from the SpaceX boss, Elon Musk.
It was Tuesday of the third operational and commercial flight of Falcon Heavy, the last having taken place in June 2019.
SpaceX currently has two operational rockets.
The first is Falcon 9, used in particular to transport NASA astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS), or even launch the Satellites of the SpaceX constellation providing the Internet from space, Starlink.
The second is Falcon Heavy, which is used to launch much heavier useful loads or more distant orbits. The rocket is able to take up to 64 tonnes in terrestrial orbit.
NASA has notably chosen Falcon Heavy to launch certain components of its future space station orbit around the moon.
On its base in Texas, SpaceX develops another rocket separately, Starship, composed of a vessel mounted on a first floor, named Super Heavy. But this rocket has never stolen in its complete configuration. Only the vessel made suborbital test flights, several of which had ended in impressive explosions.
Starship was chosen by NASA to land its astronauts on the Moon during the Mission Artémis 3, in 2025 at the earliest.
NASA will take its astronauts itself beforehand to lunar orbit, thanks to its own heavy launcher, named SLS, in development for more than a decade.
The first takeoff of SLS, which must surpass Falcon Heavy and become the most powerful rocket in the world, was twice canceled at the last minute this summer. A new attempt for this non -inhabited test flight is scheduled for November 14.
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