SpaceX is now aiming to launch an Earth observation satellite for Italy on Friday (yes, you can watch it live)

SpaceX will launch an Italian Earth observation satellite into orbit Friday, Jan. 28, a day later than planned due to bad weather, and you can watch it live as it lifts off.

A SpaceX in two stages Falcon 9 The rocket, topped with the second-generation Cosmo-SkyMed FM2 (CSG-2) satellite, is scheduled to lift off from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida on Friday at 6:11 p.m. EST (2311 GMT). SpaceX originally aimed to launch the mission on Thursday, but postponed it from 24 hours to less than an hour before liftoff.

“Due to unfavorable weather conditions, we are now targeting Friday, January 28 at 6:11 p.m. EST for the launch of COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation FM2,” SpaceX wrote on Twitter.

You can watch all the action live here on when the time comes, courtesy of SpaceX, or directly through the company. SpaceX webcasts typically begin 15-20 minutes before liftoff.

Thursday’s weather forecast called for a 60% chance of good launch conditions, with clouds and high winds a major concern, with a moderate risk to SpaceX’s plans to recover the Falcon 9 first stage after liftoff. There is a similar weather outlook on Friday, with heavy clouds and potential wind shear issues aloft, according to a US Space Force Delta 45. provide.

Related: The evolution of SpaceX rockets in pictures

Artist’s rendering of the Cosmo-SkyMed FM2 second-generation Earth observation satellite built for the Italian Space Agency (ASI). SpaceX will launch the satellite on January 28, 2022. (Image credit: ASI)

The Cosmo-SkyMed Second Generation program is funded by the Italian Space Agency, the Italian Ministry of Defense and the Italian Ministry of Education, Universities and Scientific Research. The system consists of two satellites designed to observe the Earth using Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR).

CSG is an improved sequel to the original Cosmo-SkyMed system.

“COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation[‘s] the purpose is to monitor the Earth for emergency prevention, strategy, scientific and commercial purposes, providing data on a global scale to support a variety of applications including risk management, mapping , forest and environmental protection, natural resource exploration, land management, defense and security, maritime surveillance, food and agriculture management,” agency officials wrote. European space in a program description.

The first CSG satellite, CSG-1, was launched atop an Arianespace Soyuz rocket from Kourou, French Guiana in December 2019 and is currently operating in a sun-synchronous polar orbit, 385 miles (620 kilometers) above Earth. CSG-2 is heading to the same orbit.

This will be the third launch of the Falcon 9 rocket’s first stage. The booster previously helped launch the Arabsat-6A communications satellite and Space Test Program 2 mission for the US military. For this flight, the rocket is expected to return for a vertical landing at SpaceX’s Landing Site 1 at Cape Canaveral shortly after launch.

Friday’s launch is part of a very busy 10-day period for SpaceX. His Dragon robotic cargo ship back from the International Space Station Monday (January 24), and the company plans to launch a batch of its Starlink internet satellites on Saturday (January 29) as well as the NROL-87 mission for the US National Reconnaissance Office on February 2.

Editor’s note: SpaceX originally targeted Thursday (January 27) for the launch of CSG-2 but pushed it back 24 hours due to weather. This story was updated at 5:50 p.m. EST (22:50 GMT) on January 27 to reflect the change.

Mike Wall is the author of “The low(Grand Central Publishing, 2018; illustrated by Karl Tate), a book about the search for extraterrestrial life. Follow him on Twitter @michaeldwall. Follow us on twitter @Spacedotcom Or on Facebook.

Comments are closed.