Ready for Lift Off
SpaceX has been talking about launching its Falcon Heavy rocket since April, but the launch has been met with multiple delays in the months that followed. Those eager to finally see the Falcon Heavy take off should mark their calendars (again), as we’ll now expect to see the launch of the Falcon Heavy rocket in December.
The rocket was meant to launch earlier this summer, but was pushed back to November. As anticipation for the launch grew, news spread that the Falcon Heavy would miss its November launch, due to the scarce availability of the Kennedy Space Center’s 39A launch site, and then-ongoing repairs on the Space Launch Complex 40 launch pad’s TEL (Transporter/Erector/Launcher) in Cape Canaveral.
Firing in 3-2-1…
The only other launch scheduled for the 39A launch pad is set for November 15, with multiple Falcon 9 launches being moved to the now-operational SLC-40 pad. With those launches completed and out of the way, 39A’s TEL can be configured to accommodate the Falcon Heavy.
Once that is done, the rocket will be moved to the launch mount. SpaceX hopes to perform a static fire test around December 15. If a second static fire is required, it is expected to occur around December 20.
It’s been a long time coming for SpaceX and the Falcon Heavy, but even the rocket launch isn’t expected to go off perfectly. In July, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk encouraged everyone to manage their expectations, saying “there’s a real good chance that it does not make it to orbit.”