Space Coast could see 2 launches Saturday

Thursday, 05 October 2017, 09:36:55 PM. Because of launch scrubs, Space Coast may see multiple launches Saturday

A scrubbed mission Thursday morning has potentially set the stage for a rare occurrence on Florida’s Space Coast: two launches in one day.

United Launch Alliance’s mission to send a spy satellite into space was delayed because of high winds.

However, U.S. Air Force officials say there is only a 30-percent chance that the backup launch date Friday will accommodate a launch.

The second backup date? Saturday, which is also the day SpaceX plans to send a commercial satellite into space from Florida.

On Wednesday, U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson shared on social media that U.S. Air Force Brig. Gen. Wayne Montieth was confident that the coast could accommodate multiple missions.

“Good news for Florida’s Space Coast,” Nelson posted on Twitter. “Just spoke w/ Air Force Gen. Monteith - he confirmed the Cape is ready to handle two launches in a day.”

The classified NROL-52 mission will be United Launch Alliance’s seventh launch of the year.

Its purpose, as is typical with NRO satellites, is confidential but an article on the website Spaceflight101.com said there is a “high degree of certainty” that it will be part of the NRO’s Space Data System.

The Space Data System relays data between satellites and support the U.S. Air Force.

SpaceX meanwhile, plans a launch from Kennedy Space Center's launch pad 39-A on Saturday night. The Falcon 9 carying a communications satellite for EchoStar Corp. has a two-hour launch window that opens at 6:53 p.m.

Got a news tip? msantana@orlandosentinel.com or 407-420-5256; Twitter, @marcosantana

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After nearly a half-hour delay, United Launch Alliance was able to send an Atlas V rocket into space from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station Friday.

After nearly a half-hour delay, United Launch Alliance was able to send an Atlas V rocket into space from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station Friday.

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After nearly a half-hour delay, United Launch Alliance was able to send an Atlas V rocket into space from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station Friday.

After nearly a half-hour delay, United Launch Alliance was able to send an Atlas V rocket into space from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station Friday.

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Lake Mary High School science teacher Luther Davis talks about his upcoming roadtrip to South Carolina, Friday, August 18, 2017, for the planned viewing of Monday's eclipse.  (Joe Burbank/Orlando Sentinel)

Lake Mary High School science teacher Luther Davis talks about his upcoming roadtrip to South Carolina, Friday, August 18, 2017, for the planned viewing of Monday's eclipse.  (Joe Burbank/Orlando Sentinel)

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SpaceX launched Intelsat 35e from NASA's Kennedy Space Center on Wednesday, July 5, 2017.

SpaceX launched Intelsat 35e from NASA's Kennedy Space Center on Wednesday, July 5, 2017.

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Vice President Mike Pence's visit to Kennedy Space Center gives officials confidence, but action requested

Vice President Mike Pence's visit to Kennedy Space Center gives officials confidence, but action requested

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Orlando isn't just a great place to catch a rocket launch from your backyard, it's also home to one of the best ways to peer into outer space.

Orlando isn't just a great place to catch a rocket launch from your backyard, it's also home to one of the best ways to peer into outer space.

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Article Space Coast could see 2 launches Saturday compiled by www.baltimoresun.com