To add a fifth American rocket launch site, SpaceX receives approval.

To add a fifth American rocket launch site, SpaceX receives approval.

Elon Musk’s SpaceX was given permission to lease a second rocket launch facility at a military installation in California, according to the U.S. Space Force, giving the business access to its fifth launch site in the country.

Under the terms of the lease, SpaceX will operate a launch pad at Vandenberg Space Force Base, a military launch facility north of Los Angeles, from which it will launch its workhorse Falcon rockets. There are two more of them in Florida, and its own Starbase facility is in south Texas.

According to a statement released by the Space Force on Monday night, Space Launch Delta 30 commander Col. Rob Long signed a letter on Friday endorsing the choice. The announcement made no reference to the lease’s length for SpaceX.

SpaceX now has more room to accommodate an expanding launch schedule for commercial, governmental, and internal satellite launches thanks to the new launch site, which was vacated last year by the Boeing-Lockheed joint venture United Launch Alliance.

Vandenberg Space Force Base permits launches in a southern trajectory across the Pacific, which is frequently employed for military, spy, or weather-monitoring satellites that typically rely on polar Earth orbits.

The Pentagon’s Phase 3 National Security Space Launch program, a historic military launch procurement initiative anticipated to start in the next year or two, is preparing rocket companies to compete for it when SpaceX was granted Space Launch Complex-6.


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