Inmarsat-5F4 on orbit !

SpaceX managed to deliver to orbit communications satellite Inmarsat-5F4 during impressive launch and flight. Unfortunately this time we did not see landing attempt of first stage.

Inmarsat-5F4 is fourth satellite under Global Xpress constellation will provide mobile internet access services for airline passengers, maritime crews and military personnel. Satellite was originally scheduled for Falcon Heavy rocket, but due the delay in designing process, rocket was not ready on time.  SpaceX decided to use Falcon-9 FT for delivering weighing over 6.5 tons satellite to GTO orbit (circular, 35800 kilometers over equator); this resulted with lack of landing attempt of the first stage. Stage simply burned all its propellant to help second stage to reach highest possible orbit and it was impossible to perform flip maneuver not to mention about further reentry burns.

Falcon-9 ignited its engines and started to rise over LC-39A launch pad at Kennedy Space Center at 23:21 UTC yesterday. After two minutes and forty five seconds firsts stage was cut off and it was jettisoned. It reentered and eventually fall into Atlantic Ocean. From the altitude of 80 km second stage equipped with single Merlin-1D vacuum version engine started to run and after six minutes of continuous burn it managed to reach preliminary orbit. Second burn started at T+26' and lasted for only one minute. It helped in moving upper stage into GTO orbit; satellite was deployed at 23:49 UTC elliptical orbit of 381 km to 68839 km. Twenty minutes later all necessary tests were performed and inmarsat could confirm that satellite is in perfect shape. Satellite will reach its final destination point after 3 months of orbit rising.

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