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A SpaceX satellite tv for pc launch that had been scheduled for later this month has been postponed amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The SAOCOM1B satellite tv for pc is being launched for Argentina’s Area Company, the Comisión Nacional de Actividades Espaciales (CONAE). The launch atop a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket had initially been scheduled for March 30 at Cape Canaveral Air Power Station.
Argentinian officers cited journey restrictions as the rationale for the delayed launch of the Earth remark satellite tv for pc.
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“The restrictions imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic might have an effect on the supply of personal and exterior assets for a protected insertion into orbit and subsequent commissioning of the satellite tv for pc,” defined CONAE in a translated tweet.
Officers in Argentina are ready to see how situations develop earlier than rescheduling the launch. “The authorities of this Fee will await the evolution of the situations that make it potential to renew actions associated to the launch of SAOCOM 1B, and its subsequent insertion into its closing orbit in a dependable method, and in line with the initially established plans,” they mentioned in a translated assertion.
The impression of the coronavirus outbreak on house exploration packages is being carefully adopted. Earlier this month, for instance, the European Area Company and the Russian house company Roscosmos introduced that the launch of the second ExoMars mission is being postponed to 2022, partially due to the pandemic.
The European Area Company additionally mentioned Tuesday that it’s placing eight of its spacecraft into hibernation because it scales down operations in the course of the coronavirus outbreak.
NASA has additionally briefly suspended work on the $10 billion James Webb Area Telescope in California because of the coronavirus, placing its spring 2021 goal launch date in jeopardy.
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On Thursday, United Launch Alliance is scheduled to launch the Superior Extraordinarily Excessive Frequency (AEHF-6) satellite tv for pc for the U.S. Area Power atop an Atlas V 551 rocket. The 2-hour launch window at Cape Canaveral Air Power Station’s Area Launch Complicated-41 begins at 2:57 p.m. ET.
The launch will full the Area Power’s constellation of AEHF satellites, in line with United Launch Alliance.
Earlier this week, NASA confirmed to Fox Information that an worker at NASA’s Kennedy Area Middle has examined constructive for the novel coronavirus.
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As of Wednesday morning, at the least 425,000 coronavirus instances have been identified worldwide, greater than 55,000 of that are within the U.S. The illness has accounted for at the least 18,000 deaths around the globe, together with greater than 800 individuals within the U.S.
Fox Information’ Chris Ciaccia and the Related Press contributed to this text. Observe James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers