FormoSat-7 sent into space by successful SpaceX liftoff

A SpaceX Falcon heavy rocket lifts off from pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., early Tuesday, June 25, 2019. The Falcon rocket has a payload military and scientific research satellites. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

TAIPEI (CNA) — The rocket sending the FormoSat-7 satellite developed jointly by Taiwan and the United States successfully blasted off at 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday, June 25 (Taipei time) from the John F. Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

After about a three-hour delay, Formosat-7, the second satellite constellation jointly developed by Taipei and Washington, was sent into orbit by Space X’s Falcon Heavy rocket.

It was the rocket’s third flight overall and its first night flight and its first mission to launch multiple satellites into orbit.

The launch was watched by President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) at the National Space Organization in Hsinchu through video feeds from John F. Kennedy Space Center, and it triggered an ovation among those gathered at the agency, which is responsible for the Formosat program.

The Falcon Heavy rocket had previously been scheduled to lift off at 11:30 a.m. Taipei time but the launched was delayed due to a “No Go” reading on one of the checks conducted during the countdown process.

By Frances Huang