SpaceX SES-8 Flawlessly Beautiful Dec. 3 Launch – Photo and Video Gallery

December 16, 2014 – 11:53 am

As the Falcon 9 begins to 'thread the needle' of the lightning wires, a shower of ice and flames and steam scatters, cascades and billows. Credit: nasatech.netCAPE CANAVERAL AIR FORCE STATION, FL – The flawless blastoff of SpaceX’s next generation Falcon 9 rocket on Tuesday Dec. 3 put on a spectacular sky show along the Florida Space Coast that was both beautiful and unforgettable – besides being truly historic as the firms first ever delivery of a commercial space satellite to the lucrative market of geostationary orbit.

For your enjoyment here’s a collection of photos and videos from fellow space photojournalists of the 5:41 p.m. EST sunset launch from Space Launch Complex 40 (SLC-40) at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, FL.

Following a pair of launch scrubs last week on Nov. 25 and Thanksgiving Day Nov. 28 caused by issues with the powerful new Merlin 1-D first stage engines, the third time was fat last the charm as the Falcon 9 blasted precisely at the opening of the 86 minute launch window.

Clear of the catenary lightning wires,  the Falcon 9/SES-8 mission streaks to orbit. Credit: Beautiful streak shot of SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launch with SES-8 satellite on Dec. 3,  2013. Credit: John Studwell SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket with SES-8 communications satellite soars to orbit. Credit: Ken Kremer/ Falcon 9/SES-8 streak to orbit on Dec. 3,  2013. Credit: Jeff Seibert


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