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SpaceX launches communication satellite, ditches old booster

June 4, 2018
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A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station with the SES-12 commercial communications satellite in Cape Canaveral, Fla., Monday, June 4, 2018. The rocket launched at 12:45 a.m. Monday morning with a satellite bound for geostationary orbit. A long exposure with a wide angle lens of the launch shows the rocket rising over the Cocoa Beach Pier in the foreground, and the waning gibbous moon rising in the east. (Malcolm Denemark/Florida Today via AP)

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — SpaceX has launched another satellite for a Luxembourg communication company. But it ditched the recycled booster in the Atlantic following liftoff.

The Falcon 9 rocket blasted off early Monday from Cape Canaveral, Florida. The satellite operator, SES, tweeted, “What a beautiful start to the week!”

The powerful, hefty SES satellite, weighing in at 12,000 pounds (5,400 kilograms), will provide TV and data coverage across Asia, the Pacific and the Middle East.

The Falcon’s first-stage booster previously flew last September. SpaceX is switching to a new and improved line of boosters, and so made no effort to recover this one.

SES was the first company to accept a ride on a used SpaceX rocket, back in March 2017.

SpaceX aims to lower launch costs by reusing rockets.

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