04:13 GMT11 August 2020
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    A reusable rocket booster completed its second flight into outer space on Friday, carrying the first-ever Bulgarian satellite into orbit to provide direct-to-home television to Southeastern Europe, according to a video feed by the rocket manufacturer Space-X from the Kennedy Space Center in the US state of Florida.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — After separating from the second stage, engineers guided the booster to a drone ship in the Atlantic Ocean, making the booster available for yet another mission.

    "It was the most challenging landing to date," an announcer providing commentary for the webcast stated.

    About a half hour after the launch, and with the booster back on Earth, the non-recoverable second stage engine shut down for a glide to carry the satellite into orbit. A few minutes later, the satellite successfully jettisoned.

    The payload named "BulgariaSat-1" will be guided by thrusters in the satellite to final stationary orbit about 22,000 miles above Bulgaria, where it is expected to broadcast high definition television and provide other commercial communications services for at least 15 years, an earlier press release explained.

    The flight was the second for the Falcon-9 rocket’s booster stage, the release noted. In January the booster launched from Vandenberg US Air Force Base in California.


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