SpaceX successfully launches Inmarsat-5 F4 communication satellite

SpaceX has successfully launched a very heavy commercial communications satellite aimed at delivering high-speed broadband connectivity globally. The fourth Inmarsat-5 satellite took off on a Falcon 9 rocket from Nasa's Kennedy Space Centre at about 7.21 p.m. EDT ( 4.51 a.m. Tuesday India time). "Successful deployment of Inmarsat-5 Flight 4 to a Geostationary Transfer Orbit confirmed," SpaceX tweeted.

Weighing in at nearly 13,500 pounds (6,123.4 kgs) atop the rocket, the fourth Inmarsat-5 satellite is the heaviest load lofted by a Falcon 9 yet, reported on Sunday.

"Inmarsat-5 F4 (I-5 F4) will boost the power of our award-winning Global Xpress network, which has been delivering seamless, high-speed broadband connectivity across the world since December 2015," the London-based mobile satellite services provider said in a statement. "Once in geostationary orbit, the satellite will provide additional capacity for Global Xpress users on land, at sea and in the air," Inmarsat said.

The satellite, built by Boeing, was deployed approximately 32 minutes after launch when it came under the command of the Boeing and Inmarsat satellite operations teams based at the Boeing facility in El Segundo, California. "From here I-5 F4 will be manoeuvred to its geostationary orbit, 35,786km above Earth, where it will deploy its solar arrays and reflectors and undergo intensive payload testing before beginning commercial service," Inmarsat said.

Published Date: May 17, 2017 12:59 pm | Updated Date: May 17, 2017 12:59 pm