SpaceX has lifted the BulgariaSat 1 communications satellite into space on a previously used rocket.
The Falcon 9 launched from Kennedy Space Center in Florida came at 3:10 p.m. EDT June 23. The twice-used rocket’s first stage was returned successfully to a drone ship floating near the launch site about 10 minutes after liftoff. The booster last was used in January to send 10 communication satellites into orbit for Iridium.
BulgariaSat 1 will provide direct-to-home television broadcast and data communications services over southeast Europe for Bulsatcom. It represents the first geostationary communications satellite owned by a Bulgarian company.
SpaceX and its founder, Elon Musk, have sought to make rocket launches more affordable by developing reusable booster stages. The Hawthorne, Calif.-based company first launched a rocket featuring a previously used booster in March.