SpaceX launches Eutelsat 10B communications satellite (video)

SpaceX launched a communications satellite to space Tuesday (Nov. 22) to serve air and sea traffic.

SpaceX used a Falcon 9 rocket to launch the Eutelsat 10B satellite on behalf of Eutelsat Tuesday (Nov. 22) at 9:57 p.m. EST (0257 on Nov. 23 GMT). 

This was the 11th launch for this Falcon 9 first stage, according to SpaceX.

"The Falcon 9 first stage booster supporting this mission previously launched Telstar 18 Vantage, Iridium-8 and eight Starlink missions," SpaceX wrote (opens in new tab) in a mission description. (Starlink is SpaceX's series of internet satellites, with more than 3,000 currently active in orbit.)

In pictures: The evolution of SpaceX rockets

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launches the Eutelsat 10B communications satellite on Nov. 22, 2022.

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launches the Eutelsat 10B communications satellite on Nov. 22, 2022. (Image credit: SpaceX)

There will be no further flights for the Falcon 9's first stage, however; the booster did not come back to Earth for a landing.

The Falcon 9's upper stage deployed Eutelsat 10B as planned (opens in new tab) into a geostationary transfer orbit about 35.5 minutes after liftoff. The satellite will nowmake its own way to a geosynchronous orbit, meaning that it will orbit the Earth in such a way to consistently gaze at one part of the planet below.

Eutelsat 10B includes a high-capacity communications payload in the Ku-band "in the busiest air and sea traffic zones" over the North Atlantic, Europe, the Mediterranean basin and the Middle East, Eutelsat officials wrote (opens in new tab) of the mission. A second Ku-band payload will be available for the Atlantic Ocean, Africa and the Indian Ocean.

The satellite also carries two widebeam C- and Ku-band payloads for existing customers upon Eutelsat 10A, Eutelsat officials stated. The new satellite will replace the 12-year-old Eutelsat 10A, which is expected to enter its end of service in 2023 for customers in the Americas and Asia.

Elizabeth Howell is the co-author of "Why Am I Taller (opens in new tab)?" (ECW Press, 2022; with Canadian astronaut Dave Williams), a book about space medicine. Follow her on Twitter @howellspace (opens in new tab). Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom (opens in new tab) or Facebook (opens in new tab).

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Elizabeth Howell
Staff Writer, Spaceflight

Elizabeth Howell, Ph.D., is a staff writer in the spaceflight channel since 2022. She was contributing writer for Space.com (opens in new tab) for 10 years before that, since 2012. Elizabeth's reporting includes an exclusive with Office of the Vice-President of the United States, speaking several times with the International Space Station, witnessing five human spaceflight launches on two continents, working inside a spacesuit, and participating in a simulated Mars mission. Her latest book, "Why Am I Taller?", is co-written with astronaut Dave Williams. Elizabeth holds a Ph.D. and M.Sc. in Space Studies from the University of North Dakota, a Bachelor of Journalism from Canada's Carleton University and (soon) a Bachelor of History from Athabasca University. Elizabeth is also a post-secondary instructor in communications and science since 2015. Elizabeth first got interested in space after watching the movie Apollo 13 in 1996, and still wants to be an astronaut someday. Mastodon: https://qoto.org/@howellspace