SpaceX successfully launches Falcon Heavy, world's most powerful rocket, for paying customer

Falcon Heavy launch delayed again, now targeted for Thursday evening

In its turn, Russian Rocket and Space Corporation Energia announced plans to develop a super-heavy-lift launch vehicle using existing components back in 2016.

The historic launch was watched by millions around the globe thanks to Mr Musk's body decision to mount a cherry-red Tesla sports auto as the rocket's payload.

SpaceX's Falcon Heavy took off yesterday from the historic Launchpad 39A at the Kennedy Space Centre in Florida.

About two minutes later, its center core landed successfully on the "Of Course I Still Love You" droneship in the Atlantic Ocean.

The new and improved Falcon Heavy thundered into the early evening sky with a communication satellite called Arabsat, the rocket's first paying customer.

SpaceX tweeted: "Successful deployment of Arabsat-6A to geosynchronous transfer orbit confirmed-completing Falcon Heavy's first commercial mission!" Shortly after, the rocket's three boosters touched down back on Earth. The modernised LM 2100 includes several innovations that make the satellite more powerful, more flexible and more versatile in orbit.

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SpaceX issued a warning that Space Coast residents should expect several loud sonic booms as the rockets arrive back on Earth. SpaceX chief operating officer Gwynne Shotwell flew to Saudi Arabia to reassure them that the Falcon Heavy would be reliable.

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The rocket is expected to be used primarily for United States military missions, and to launch spy satellites and hefty commercial telecom satellites.

Center core: It's the landing of this third booster that is the greatest achievement, after a similar attempt by SpaceX failed in 2018, instead hitting the ocean at 300 miles an hour.

However, with Musk's company intent on driving down launch costs by recycling rocket parts, the boosters for this flight may be re-used for future missions. It was carrying Elon Musk's red Tesla Roadster with the crash dummy Starman at the wheel.

On Falcon Heavy's maiden voyage into space in February 2018, an estimated 100,000 visitors came to watch.

SpaceX set a company record previous year with 21 launches for customers.

The middle booster, after pushing the payload into space, returned almost 10 minutes later for a successful landing on SpaceX's seafaring drone ship 400 miles (645 km) off the Florida coast. That launch was the biggest rocket since the Saturn era ended in the 1970s.