SpaceX's Falcon Heavy rocket set to launch Wednesday night

SpaceX's Falcon Heavy rocket set to launch Wednesday night

SpaceX's Falcon Heavy rocket set to launch Wednesday night

Today's launch, which is scheduled for 6:35 p.m. EST, will see SpaceX use the Falcon Heavy in a commercial capacity for the very first time, sending a communications satellite from Arabsat into orbit around Earth.

As far as what time the launch will happen, the launch window opens at 6:30 p.m.

SpaceX will provide a webcast of the launch, landing attempts, and satellite separation from the upper stage, beginning 20 minutes before the anticipated liftoff on Wednesday.

During Falcon Heavy Flight 1, the rocket's center core - B1032 - was destroyed when a failure to reignite its landing Merlin 1D engines resulted in the booster slamming into the ocean at more than 300 miles per hour (~500 km/h). Those wanting to watch the launch will need to find an alternative viewing area.

Falcon Heavy has already been chosen for a few contracts, including a $130 million contract to launch an Air Force satellite that was awarded just four months after its inaugural flight in February 2018. Eastern and close at 8:31 p.m. The window ends at 8:32 p.m.

Falcon Heavy is a modified version of SpaceX's standard Falcon 9 rocket, essentially made up of three Falcon 9's strapped together, albeit with a reinforced center core.

"SpaceX will attempt to land Falcon Heavy's side boosters at Landing Zones 1 and 2 and Falcon Heavy's center core on the Of Course I Still Love You droneship during the Arabsat-6A mission", SpaceX tweeted out Tuesday.

According to, Falcon Heavy flights cost SpaceX customers between $90 million and $150 million.

Those landings could potentially cause the sonic booms that SpaceX said might be heard in Orange, Seminole, Brevard, Volusia and other Florida counties.

Part of Falcon Heavy's appeal is the fact that its hardware is reusable.

- The Space Coast is getting ready for another liftoff! Isolated showers are possible through sunset and the primary weather concern Wednesday are clouds associated with moisture from a low moving into the Atlantic Ocean. But Wednesday has a clear forecast with an 80% probability of a launch, so odds are good the mission will proceed.

Some roads will have limited access or be closed.

Heavy will lift off at Kennedy Space Center carrying the Arabsat 6A communications satellite. News 6's James Sparvero was there at the pad for the event. The second stage, the one that actually gets the cargo into orbit, comprises a Falcon 9-sourced Merlin engine.

Media and spectators from around the world have flown in to watch the rocket's second-ever flight.

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