Home / Science / NASA's IXPE mission scores another victory in the SpaceX contract column

NASA's IXPE mission scores another victory in the SpaceX contract column



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KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Florida – SpaceX continues to accumulate contract wins. The most recent announcement related to a NASA mission, which aimed to demonstrate that the 74 flights of Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy – did not go unnoticed.

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Artistic representation of spacecraft exploration of X-ray polarimetry imaging NASA. Image credit: NASA

Artistic representation of NASA's imaginary X-ray polarimetry spacecraft. Image credit: NASA

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Florida – SpaceX continues to accumulate contract wins. The most recent announcement related to a NASA mission to demonstrate that the company's 74 Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy flights did not go unnoticed.

NASA announced Monday, July 8, 2019 that SpaceX won the contract to launch the spacecraft Imaging X-Ray Polarimetry Explorer (IXPE). This flight is currently scheduled to take place in April 2021.

A flight-proven Falcon 9 was used to launch an IXPE from 39A launch complex at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. If all goes as planned, the spacecraft will be placed in a circular orbit 540 km above the equator. IXPE will be the lightest payload ever launched on a Falcon 9, weighing only 320 kg (710 lb).

The total cost of launching the mission is $ 50.3 million.

IXPE is part of NASA's class of small explorers. The spacecraft is composed of three X-ray telescopes that will search for polarized X-rays from black holes, pulsars and neutron stars. Its mission duration is two years. The spacecraft is currently manufactured by Ball Aerospace.

SpaceX President and Chief Operating Officer Gwynne Shotwell made the following statement after the announcement of the contract award.

"SpaceX is honored that NASA continues to rely on its proven launchers for the introduction of important scientific tasks into orbit. IXPE will be SpaceX's sixth contracted mission under NASA's LSP, two of which were successfully launched in 2016 and 2018, reinforcing the agency's scientific observation capabilities. "

Given the prices charged by SpaceX to send payloads into orbit, the company based in Hawthorne, California, is awarded more and more contracts. Two missions, Jason-3 and TESS, have already taken to the top of one of SpaceX's offerings as part of the agency's launch services program (LSP). The company also won the contracts for the SWOT, Sentinel-6A and DART missions.

Tagged: Elon Musk Falcon 9 IXPE Kennedy Space Center Launch Complex 39A NASA SpaceX The Range

Patrick Attwell

Patrick Attwell is from Houston, Texas, but currently resides in Austin, Texas, where he studies accounting at Concordia University in Texas. Atwell is passionate about everything related to aerospace, rockets and aviation. Atwell has been working to cover these areas for over ten years. After attending and attending the launch of NASA's OSIRIS-REx mission, he gave it what is known in the space community as the "rocket rocket". Since then, Atwell has followed his dreams and has covered events related to commercial crew flight missions at NASA's Johnson Space Center and other events related to space in the state. from Lone Star.


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