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Falcon 9 v1.1 performs first launch
Posted: Sun, Sep 29, 2013, 2:18 PM ET (1818 GMT)
Falcon 9 launch of CASSIOPE (SpaceX) The first launch of an upgraded version of SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket was declared a success by the company shortly after liftoff Sunday. The Falcon 9 v1.1 lifted off from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California at 12:00 pm EDT (1600 GMT) at the beginning of a three-hour launch window. The launch proceeded as planned and company officials later confirmed that the spacecraft's primary payload, Canada's CASSIOPE spacecraft, and several secondary cubesats, all deployed nominally. The launch was highly anticipated as it represented several firsts, including of the upgraded Falcon 9 with improved engines and a stretched first stage. The launch was also the first from SpaceX from its pad at Vandenberg and the first Falcon 9 launch to use a payload fairing. The primary payload, CASSIOPE, is a Canadian space science and technology demonstration satellite.
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