SpaceX to launch super secret 'Zuma' payload Thursday

SpaceX  Flickr

A SpaceX Falcon 9 carrying the mysterious "Zuma" awaits launch Tuesday night. But, as the launch site's website puts it, "No other information is available about this mission".

According to Space, SpaceX is launching the payload, which was commissioned by defense technology company Northrop Grumman, for the USA government. That's the name given to the payload SpaceX is scheduled to blast into low earth orbit from Cape Canaveral sometime between 8pm and 10pm local time Thursday, and as CNET puts it, "just about all that is known about Zuma is that it's going to help the United States government do. something". As Florida Today said, SpaceX is no stranger to launching top secret missions, including a spy satellite for the National Reconnaissance Office and another payload for the Department of Defense.

The 45th Space Wing's tweet does not necessarily mean that Zuma is an Air Force payload. "Now targeting November 16 for launch - rocket and payload remain healthy‚ and the teams will use the extra day to conduct additional mission assurance work". There are few clues in the launch's mission patch.

Launch Window: 10 p.m. Lift-off has initially been scheduled for Wednesday, but has been postponed to Thursday, due to weather conditions.

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After liftoff, SpaceX will attempt to return the first stage portion of its Falcon 9 rocket to Earth for a controlled landing on solid ground near Cape Canaveral.

What is known is that one of Space X's Falcon 9 rockets will be launched into low-earth orbit.

The launch window opens at 8 p.m.

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