Iridium CEO Matt Desch announced in a Twitter post Monday the arrival of the stage 1 booster for SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket in California for the launch of Iridium satellites as part of the company’s NEXT constellation, Ars Technica reported Monday.
Eric Berger writes the rocket’s first stage booster was spotted Sunday in Arizona en route to Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.
The Falcon 9’s first-stage booster will support the launch of 10 Iridium satellites, according to the report.
A SpaceX official told Ars Technica that launch pad readiness, rocket testing and other factors are still “up in the air” and that it is still “premature” to tell whether Iridium’s satellites would be the first payload to launch aboard Falcon 9.
The news comes weeks after Desch said he is confident that SpaceX is “back on the path” to launch Iridium’s new fleet of satellites after SpaceX CEO Elon Musk spoke about the cause of the Sept. 1 rocket explosion prior to the static fire test.