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SpaceX Falcon 9 Sends US Spy Satellite Into Orbit! Starlink Launches To Follow

SpaceX Falcon 9 successfully launched a U.S. spy satellite on Wednesday, Feb 2. The latest space flight took off from California, allowing the NRO sat to reach the Earth’s orbit. 

SpaceX Falcon 9 Sends US Spy Satellite Into Orbit! Starlink Launches To Follow

(Photo : Photo by PATRICK T. FALLON/AFP via Getty Images)
The reusable first stage of a SpaceX (Space Exploration Technologies Corp.) Falcon 9 rocket returns to land after the launch of the NROL-87 spy satellite payload for the National Reconnaissance Office from the SLC-4E launch pad at Vandenberg US Space Force Base on February 2, 2022 in Lompoc, California. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)

As of the moment, not much is known about the spy satellite sent by SpaceX into space. This is because it is a classified spacecraft of the National Reconnaissance Office. 

For those who don’t know what NRO is, it is a U.S. government agency that allows the United States to observe critical places that are hard to reach, especially for humans. 

The agency uses its expertise to develop, build, design, and launch intelligence satellites for the U.S. 

SpaceX Falcon 9 Sends US Spy Satellite 

Because the recent SpaceX satellite launch was a success, NRO celebrated the space activity. NROL-87 is the first spy spacecraft of NRO to reach space this 2022. 

SpaceX Falcon 9 Sends US Spy Satellite Into Orbit! Starlink Launches To Follow

(Photo : Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launches from Vandenberg Air Force Base carrying the SAOCOM 1A and ITASAT 1 satellites, as seen on October 7, 2018 near Santa Barbara, California. After launching the satellites, the Falcon 9 rocket successfully returned to land on solid ground near the launch site rather than at sea. The satellites will become part of a six-satellite constellation that will work in tandem with an Italian constellation known as COSMO-SkyMed.

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“The success of NROL-87 was the result of multiple partnerships and the innovation of our people,” said Dr. Chris Scolese, the current NRO Director, via the agency’s immediate press release

Meanwhile, NRO Office of Space Launch’s Director, Col. Chad Davis, added that the successful NROL-87 satellite launch shows NRO’s ability to create advanced systems that can protect the United States and its allied countries from space threats. 

Right now, NRO was able to send a total of 16 satellites, thanks to the help of SpaceX and other space agencies, for the past two years.

SpaceX To Launch Starlink Sats Next 

According to CBS News‘ latest report, the latest NRO spy satellite launch is a part of SpaceX’s rapid-fire launch pace, a  six orbit-class missions in 28 days. 

Now, the giant independent space agency plans to send Starlink satellites next. Elon Musk’s company is expected to send more than 49 internet sats into orbit on Thursday, Feb. 3. 

In other news, SpaceX’s rocket contract with the U.S. Air Force was a success. Meanwhile, SpaceX Falcon 9’s Italian sat launch is delayed once again. 

For more news updates about SpaceX launches and other space activities, always keep your tabs open here at TechTimes.  

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Written by: Griffin Davis

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