Launch Spotlight: SES-18/19 – SpaceX set to launch new communications satellites to orbit

SpaceX is set to launch a Falcon 9 from SLC-40 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida on March 17, 2023, at 7:38 p.m. EDT. This launch will carry the SES-18 and SES-19 communications satellites to a Geostationary Transfer Orbit.

Launch Overview

Launch Date: March 17, 2023, 7:38 p.m. EDT

Payload: SES-18 and SES-19

Rocket: Falcon 9 (B1069-6)

Launch Pad: SLC-40, Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, Florida

Destination: Geostationary Transfer Orbit

Landing Site: Just Read The Instructions, Atlantic Ocean

The Mission

SpaceX is set to launch the SES-18 and SES-19 communications satellites to a Geostationary Transfer Orbit. Built by Thales Alenia, the SES satellites will help continue SES’s progress of migrating existing C-band customers while clearing space for 5G coverage.

What is the Falcon 9?

SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket is the workhorse of commercial launches into Earth orbit. Nine Merlin engines power the partially reusable rocket on the first stage and a single vacuum-optimized Merlin on the second stage. The Falcon 9 has launched a total of 209 times with a 98% success rate, making it a highly trusted vehicle among the commercial, scientific, and defense sectors.

The Booster

B1069-6 will be launching the SES-18/19 mission. This will be the 6 mission for this Falcon 9 booster.

B1069 Flight Log

  • CRS-24
  • Starlink Group 4-23
  • OneWeb Mission 15
  • Starlink Group 5-3

The Weather

March 17, 2022

  • 80% GO
  • Primary Concern(s):
    • Liftoff Winds
  • Risk(s):
    • Upper-Level Wind Shear- Low-Mod

24-hour Delay

  • 35% GO
  • Primary Concern(s):
    • Cumulus Clouds
    • Surface Electric Field
    • Thick Clouds
  • Risk(s):
    • Upper-Level Wind Shear- Low-Mod

Last Updated: March 16, 2023, 2:05 p.m. EDT

Where to watch?

You can find coverage of Wednesday’s launch on SpaceX’s YouTube channel. The live stream will usually go live about 15 minutes before liftoff and will offer the best views of the launch.

Featured Image: CSG-2 – Jared Locke for

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