SpaceX has successfully launched Koreasat-5A, a South Korean geostationary communications satellite, at 3:34pm EDT (19:34 GMT) on Monday, 30 October. The satellite was launched using a Falcon 9 from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center’s Launch Complex 39A.
Koreasat-5A arrived at its targeted Geostationary Transfer Orbit (GTO) approximately 36 minutes after liftoff. Like most SpaceX launches these days, the Falcon 9’s first stage was recovered – this took place approximately 9 minutes after liftoff, on SpaceX’s drone shop “Of Course I Still Love You”. This is SpaceX’s 13th first-stage landing this year, of its total 16 launches.
Koresat-5A, owned by South Korean satellite operator KT SAT, will replace Koreasat-5. The satellite, manufactured by Thales Alenia Space, will be placed at 113° E to cover Korea, Japan, the Philippines, Guam, Indochina, and South and Central Asia, using 2 types of Ku-band transponders. Weighing approximately 3500 kg, Koreasat-5A was developed based on Thales Alenia’s Spacebus 4000B2 platform.
This is the second Koreasat launch this year, the first being the launch of Koreasat 7 via Arianespace’s Ariane 5 heavy-lift rocket on May 4. KT SAT will now have five satellites in geostationary orbit – Koreasat 5A, 7, 6, 8 and 5.
Watch the launch: