Replay of SpaceX's first launch and landing of 2018

Zuma mission.      SpaceX

SpaceX on Sunday blasted off a secretive USA government payload known as Zuma, a mission whose nature - and the agency behind it - remains a mystery.

Today, Elon Musk's SpaceX will launch "Zuma", a mysterious government spacecraft of unknown goal, on one of its partially-reusable Falcon 9 two-stage rockets from Launch Complex 40 at Florida's Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

To date, SpaceX has launched 49 rockets, of which 44 have been successful.

The launch was originally scheduled to take place in November, but was scrubbed due to a rocket fairing issue. The two-hour launch window begins at 8 p.m.

The second stage was programmed to fire into orbit to deploy Zuma a few hundred miles above Earth.


This will be SpaceX's first launch of 2018.

The company aims to top that total this year, flying from three launch pads - at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Kennedy Space Center and Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.

CEO Elon Musk says the heavy-lift launcher's debut test flight - carrying his own Tesla Roadster sports auto into space - is possible from KSC before the end of this month.

SpaceX tweeted that weather conditions are now 80 per cent favourable for Monday, and that it's completed yet more pre-launch testing, so all looks as good to go on paper as firing a giant canister of rocket fuel and secret technology into the sky can be. It was postponed to allow SpaceX to analyze data from a previous launch.

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