SpaceX Launches Indonesian Communications Satellite

CAPE CANAVERAL AIR FORCE STATION, Fla. (SpaceX) — On Tuesday, August 7th at 1:18 a.m. EDT, Falcon 9 successfully lifted off from Space Launch Complex 40 (SLC-40) at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida carrying the Merah Putih mission for PT Telkom Indonesia. The satellite was deployed approximately 32 minutes after liftoff into its targeted Geostationary Transfer Orbit (GTO).

Following stage separation, Falcon 9’s first stage, which previously flew on the first Block 5 mission in May 2018, successfully landed on SpaceX’s “Of Course I Still Love You” droneship stationed in the Atlantic Ocean.


Merah Putih is a geostationary commercial communications satellite which will be operated at an orbital position of 108 degrees east. The satellite, built by SSL on their SSL 1300 platform, will be integrated into PT Telkom Indonesia’s greater network to provide service to Indonesia and other areas in South and Southeast Asia.

Merah Putih, which stands for the red and white colors of the Indonesian flag, will carry an all C-band payload capable of supporting a wide range of applications, including providing mobile broadband across Indonesia and Southeast Asia. The satellite is expected to have a service lifetime of 15 or more years.

PT Telkom Indonesia is the largest telecommunications and network provider in Indonesia. The company offers a wide range of network and telecommunications services, including fixed wireline connections, cellular services, and internet and data communication services.

Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida

SpaceX’s SLC-40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station is a world-class launch site that builds on a strong heritage. The site, located at the north end of Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, was used for many years to launch Titan rockets, among the most powerful in the U.S. fleet. SpaceX took over the facility in May 2008.

The center of the complex is composed of the concrete launch pad and flame diverter system. Surrounding the pad are four lightning towers, propellant storage tanks, and the integration hangar. Before launch, Falcon 9’s stages and payload are housed inside the hangar. The payload is mated to the Falcon 9 inside SLC-40’s hangar on the transporter erector. The rocket and payload are then rolled out from the hangar to the launch pad and lifted to a vertical position.