SpaceX launched the GPS III SV4 navigation satellite for the U.S. Space Force on Thursday from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Base in Florida.
GPS III SV4 is part of the U.S. military’s latest generation of navigation satellites for the Global Positioning System. Lockheed Martin built the spacecraft.
The Falcon 9 booster made an on-time liftoff at 6:24 p.m. EST. The navigation satellite was deployed from the rocket’s second stage 1 hour 29 minutes after launch.
The Falcon 9’s first stage successfully landed on the “Of Course I Still Love You” drone ship in the Atlantic Ocean.
SpaceX used a new Falcon 9 first stage for the mission. In September, the U.S. Space Force’s Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC) announced an agreement with SpaceX to launch previously flown first stage boosters on future national security space launch missions.