SpaceX launches first Bulgarian Satellite Bulgariasat-1

SpaceX launches first Bulgarian Satellite  Bulgariasat-1

SpaceX has successfully launched the first Bulgarian satellite using SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. The launch was earlier delayed due to small glitch and the mission from Florida’s east coast on Friday has successfully placed Bulgaria-owned television broadcasting satellite. Bulgariasat-1 is the first geostationary communications satellite launched for Bulgaria.

After the successful placement of satellite in orbit, Falcon 9’s first stage booster started it journey back to Earth. The rocket successfully landed on drone ship dubbed “Of Course I Still Love You,” few hundred miles from Cape Canaveral.

SpaceX had two-hour launch window for the mission with a backup launch window on Saturday. The mission was late by an hour from its scheduled time due to some last-minute ground system verifications. SpaceX CEO Elon Musk informed about successful launch on Twitter. Musk added that the Friday launch marked the highest-ever re-entry force and heat for Falcon 9. The rocket has been a game-changer for SpaceX as with reusable technology, SpaceX has managed to reduce cost of missions.

Informing about the mission, SpaceX official post added, “This mission marked the second reflight of a Falcon 9 first stage, having previously supported the Iridium-1 mission from Vandenberg Air Force Base in January of this year.”

Following stage separation, the first stage of Falcon 9 successfully landed on SpaceX’s East Coast droneship “Of Course I Still Love You,” stationed in the Atlantic Ocean. This marks the first time a Falcon 9 first stage has landed on both SpaceX’s East and West coast droneships, having previously landed on “Just Read the Instructions” in the Pacific Ocean.

A report published by NASA SpaceFlight informed, “Since the CRS-8 mission, all but one of SpaceX’s attempts to land Falcon 9’s first stage have been successful. The only exception was June 2016’s launch of the Eutelsat 117 West B and ABS-2A satellites, where one of the three engines used for the landing burn did not generate sufficient thrust. The booster was destroyed on touchdown.”