SpaceX gets Cape Canaveral launch pad

StarChaserSendoffSpaceX has been granted a five-year license to launch rockets from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, the U.S. Air Force said on Thursday.

The approval will help privately held start-up compete with Orbital Sciences Corp., which develops small space systems, and later with the bigger rockets of Europe’s Arianespace and the United Launch Alliance.

Cape Canaveral gives SpaceX launch facilities on both the East and West coasts, a requirement to vie for the U.S. government’s largest launch contracts.

It also lets SpaceX offer its clients a wider range of launch location options.

In the second half of next year, from Canaveral, the company plans the maiden launch of its Falcon 9 rocket, designed to put into orbit the biggest satellites built for the government and commercial clients, said Tim Hughes, SpaceX’s chief counsel.

Source:  Reuters

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