IANS Feb 12, 2018 16:47 PM IST
SpaceX is targeting 17 February for the test launch of its first satellite for global internet constellation, a project, informally known as Starlink, which aims to provide low-cost internet access on a global scale, the media reported.
The prototype spacecraft, known as Microsat 2a and 2b, is reported to be included as secondary payloads on a Falcon 9 rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, Geekwire.com reported late on 11 February.
The primary payload is a 3,000-pound Spanish radar observation satellite called Paz.
"Static fire test of Falcon 9 complete, targeting 17 February launch of Paz from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California," SpaceX tweeted on 11 February.
SpaceX has kept mum about many of the details relating to Starlink, but the company's business plan calls for putting thousands of communication satellites in orbit, with limited service starting by 2020, the report said.
Static fire test of Falcon 9 complete—targeting February 17 launch of PAZ from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.
— SpaceX (@SpaceX) February 11, 2018
According to a report at Nasaspaceflight.com, the Paz satellite, named after the Spanish word for "peace", will be launched into a 514 km circular orbit. It was built by Airbus for the Spanish company hisdeSAT and will be used for military and civilian purposes.