- SpaceX, which has confirmed resilient within the face of the coronavirus pandemic, lastly felt the impression after its deliberate launch of a SAOCOM satellite tv for pc was delayed.
- The delay comes as Vandenberg Air Power Base is locking down and limiting operations, together with rocket launches.
- The launch would have despatched a Falcon 9 skyward to ship a satellite tv for pc into orbit, however it should now be rescheduled for a later date.
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NASA has already needed to take care of the impression of the coronavirus pandemic in a variety of methods. SpaceX, alternatively, had remained largely unaffected by the outbreak, however you knew it couldn’t keep that method ceaselessly. Now, as TechCrunch experiences, the corporate is going through its first coronavirus-related delay, with the deliberate launch of a SAOCOM satellite tv for pc being pushed again indefinitely.
The delay comes as California’s Vandenberg Air Power Base, the place the launch was presupposed to happen, points a lockdown to forestall the virus from spreading. There aren’t any confirmed circumstances of COVID-19 infections on the bottom proper now, however the Air Power is taking a proactive method right here and hoping to maintain it that method.
The launch was initially scheduled for March 30th. SpaceX’s Falcon 9 was tasked with shuttling the satellite tv for pc, which is a part of a program for the Argentinian house company CONAE, into orbit round Earth. Now it appears that evidently launch gained’t be taking place and it’s unclear precisely when the launch could also be rescheduled.
Within the meantime, Vandenberg Air Power Base will function with a decreased workers, solely permitting vital workers on-site whereas mandating a stay-at-home plan for everybody else. The launch of the satellite tv for pc just isn’t high-priority sufficient to be thought-about an important mission and it must watch for an unspecified future launch date.
The coronavirus pandemic has affected each facet of our lives, and it’s not shocking to see that it will definitely caught up with SpaceX. In actual fact, it’s exceptional that that is the primary time SpaceX’s plans have been sidelined by the outbreak, and it’s admirable that the corporate was nonetheless capable of launch its Starlink mission as not too long ago as final week.
NASA, alternatively, has been pressured to put all of its facilities in the US on lockdown, with solely mission-essential workers allowed entry. Everybody else is being instructed to do business from home to one of the best of their potential whereas the company makes an attempt to maintain as lots of its missions on monitor as attainable.
The Mars 2020 mission is, in the interim, nonetheless anticipated to launch in July, although it’s actually attainable that it could possibly be pushed again earlier than then. The James Webb House Telescope, alternatively, will seemingly face important delays as work on the challenge is paused. That challenge, which has already been delayed many instances, must wait.