Falcon 9 Block 5 | Spaceflight SSO-A

SpaceX launch of a Falcon 9 Block 5 Rocket

Launch Status

SpaceX was scheduled to launch a Falcon 9 Block 5 rocket as part of the Spaceflight SSO-A mission. The launch window for the Dedicated Rideshare mission was on Mon, Dec 3rd, 2018, 1:34 PM EST from Space Launch Complex 4E, Vandenberg AFB, CA. The status of the launch was Success. Don’t miss this exciting rocket launch! Watch the launch video of the Falcon 9 Block 5 and experience the excitement for yourself. The first stage of the Falcon 9 successfully landed on the ASDS, JRTI, stationed off the west coast. This was the third successful landing of B1046.


Spaceflight SSO-A

Dedicated rideshare launching payloads into sun-synchronous orbit. Payloads include ORS-6, EU:CROPIS, STPSat-5, BlackSky Global-1 to -4, HawkEye Pathfinder 1-3, Iceye, NEXTSat-1, 2 SkySats, Centauri II, and a Flock of Doves.


Space Launch Complex 4E, Vandenberg AFB, CA

Vandenberg AFB, CA, USA


Falcon 9 Block 5

Falcon 9 is a two-stage rocket designed and manufactured by SpaceX for the reliable and safe transport of satellites and the Dragon spacecraft into orbit. The Block 5 variant is the fifth major interval aimed at improving upon the ability for rapid reusability.


Space Exploration Technologies Corp., known as SpaceX, is an American aerospace manufacturer and space transport services company headquartered in Hawthorne, California. It was founded in 2002 by entrepreneur Elon Musk with the goal of reducing space transportation costs and enabling the colonization of Mars. SpaceX has many pads, on the East Coast of the US they own SLC-40 at Cape Canaveral and LC-39A at the Kennedy Space Center for their lower inclination launches. They also own SLC-4E at Vandenberg, California for their high inclination launches. Another site is also being developed at Boca Chica, Texas.

The first stage of the Falcon 9 successfully landed on the ASDS, JRTI, stationed off the west coast. This was the third successful landing of B1046.

Falcon 9 booster B1046 is a reusable first-stage booster for the orbital-class Falcon 9 vehicle manufactured by SpaceX. B1046 was the first Falcon 9 block 5 to fly and the first to do a re-flight. It is also the first rocket to fly two GTO missions and the first orbital-class booster to fly and land three times. Notably, this booster was also the first to launch from each of SpaceX's Falcon 9 launch pads. Destroyed during the Crew Dragon In-Flight Abort test.

Just Read the Instructions (JRTI)

The third ASDS barge, Just Read the Instructions (JRTI) services launches in the Pacific Ocean for launches from Vandenberg AFB. It was first put to use in January of 2016 to attempt to recover a Falcon 9 first-stage booster from the Jason-3 mission which successfully landed but subsequently fell over and experienced an Rapid Unscheduled Disassembly (RUD).

Autonomous Spaceport Drone Ship (ASDS)

An autonomous spaceport drone ship (ASDS) is an ocean-going vessel derived from a deck barge, outfitted with station-keeping engines and a large landing platform. Construction of such ships was commissioned by aerospace company SpaceX to allow for recovery of rocket first-stages at sea for high-velocity missions which do not carry enough fuel to return to the launch site after lofting spacecraft onto an orbital trajectory.