Rocket Blasts Off From Cape Canaveral, Florida

January 6, 2014

Private spaceflight firm SpaceX blasted a rocket into orbit this evening [Jan 6] from Florida’s Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, with a Falcon 9 rocket carrying a ThaiCom 6 communications satellite into space.

It appears that the liftoff was visible from Bermuda, with a reader emailing to say they saw strange lights in the sky at around 6pm, describing it as a “satellite or cylinder traveling at high speed” with very bright white lights behind it.

The company said that the launch window will open at 6.06pm Bermuda time, and they blasted off just past 6.00pm, with the company tweeting “Liftoff”.

The 224-foot tall rocket headed toward the satellite’s drop-off point more than 55,000 miles above earth, a location from where it will provide communications services for customers in Southeast Asia and Africa.

Video of the this evening’s liftoff:

SpaceX — which was formed in 2002 by PayPal founder Elon Musk — lists the cost for the Falcon rocket from $56 million to $135 million, with discounts available for multi-launch purchases.

According to the Telegraph, “SpaceX has been contracted by NASA to ferry cargo and ultimately people to the International Space Station [ISS], effectively replacing the Space Shuttle.

“What’s more, Musk has reduced the cost of reaching the ISS by a staggering 90 per cent, from $1 billion per mission to a mere $60 million, with more savings to follow.”

In their press kit for this launch [PDF], the company said they are the only private company ever to return a spacecraft from low-Earth orbit, which it first accomplished in 2010.

Under a $1.6 billion contract with NASA, SpaceX will fly at least 10 more cargo supply missions to the ISS.

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Comments (7)

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  1. Kangoocar says:

    Bermuda lost a golden opportunity to better ourselves by missing the chance to send a certain political party that’s name starts with a P, on that journey!!! I personally would have been more than happy to pay my share for the betterment of all of us!!!

    • Rockfish#1and#2 says:

      Did Terry Lister make the trip to witness the fruits of his Labour?

  2. Pure Madness!!!! says:

    I was at Nationals lower field around that time and noticed something strange in the sky just over the city heading southeast. The light was cone like behind the object, with the light disappearing after about a minute or so but I could still see the remaining object until it disappeared into the darkness. My daughter thought it to be a UFO (lol) thanks for the notification.

    • rubber bong says:

      You do realize that Nationals and the National Stadium/NSC are two different places and aren’t interchangeable. Nationals is the site of the current Somersfield Academy which only up until a few years ago was a functional rugby/hockey club until the school bought the property.

      • Pure Madness!!!! says:

        Who cares????? It’s more than obvious you knew exactly where I was talking about.. And yes, I know the difference as I have lived in both areas.. THANKS!!!!

    • Pure Prugness!!!! says:

      Inna duuuuuuuuuuuuun. What a boasty lil UFO!

  3. skywatcher says:

    We saw the white circular glow travel across the sky yesterday evening from our porch!