Over the last several months, SpaceX has been seriously diversifying its clientele: In May, it flew a spy satellite for the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO). On Tuesday, the US Air Force announced that in August, it will be launching a reusable X-37B mini-space shuttle on board a Falcon 9 rocket. While some of the details are still shrouded in mystery (because the military), the Air Force said it will use the launch to test some electronics and oscillating heat pipes aboard the spacecraft. Fun times!
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Yesterday was a big day for India and its very, very large rocket: Last night the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) successfully launched its 640 tonne GSLV-Mk III rocket, carrying the GSAT-19 communications satellite on it. The GSLV-Mk III's maiden voyage brought its satellite into a geosynchronous transfer orbit above Earth's equator -- a high Earth orbit that allows a satellite to sync up with Earth's rotation. Not to shabby for a first launch.
SpaceX is gearing up to get its proverbial arse to Mars. For the first time today, the aerospace company will launch an already-used Dragon cargo ship to the International Space Station (ISS), carrying 2721kg of supplies and science experiments. The spacecraft will lift off from Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, and naturally, NASA TV will be broadcasting the whole thing live starting at 7:15AM AEST. The launch itself is set to begin at 7:55AM AEST.