SpaceX's Falcon 9 Just Completed Another Successful Launch

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Lift-off was at 05.33 GMT and the launch was flawless, and delivered Hispasat 30W-6 into a geostationary transfer orbit just 30 minutes after launch.

The rocket lifted off at 00:33 Eastern Standard Time (GMT 0533) at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in the southern eastern USA state of Florida, with a payload "at 6 metric tons and nearly the size of a city bus", said Elon Musk, the founder of SpaceX.

SpaceX originally planned to launch the satellite on February 25, but was forced to postpone takeoff to perform additional tests.

Less than two weeks after launching out of California, SpaceX is ready to fly its next Falcon 9 rocket, this time from Florida.

Hispasat was first formed in 1989 and its first satellite, Hispasat 1A, launched on an Ariane 4 rocket in 1992. This is also likely to be followed by another Falcon 9 launch in early to mid-April carrying Bangladesh's first communications satellite.

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But SpaceX rebounded last year with an 18-mission surge, and aims to exceed that total this year. The rocket also lifted along the heaviest communication satellite it has ever carried.

The mission itself wasn't among the company's most spectacular: there was no dramatic landing of the first-stage booster or Roadster being launched toward Mars.

According to Ars Technica's Eric Berger, who highlighted the imminent landmark, the Falcon 9 should make it to 50 launches faster than some comparable programs.

The satellite is Madrid-based Hispasat's 11th in orbit, concluding an expansion that more than doubled the company's fleet over the past five years.

These "recycled" rocket launches are part of SpaceX's goal to cut the cost of space flight and re-use expensive rocket parts instead of tossing them in the ocean after each launch.