The RADARSAT constellation, built by Maxar Technologies' MDA, is the third in Canada's sequence of Earth observation satellites. The first and only time that SpaceX has landed a Falcon 9 rocket on California land was in October of 2018.
Using a C-band synthetic aperture radar system, the Radarsat Constellation Mission satellites will operate day and night, peering through cloud cover to monitor the vast northern reaches of the continent, Canada's long shoreline and maritime approaches.More news: Trump Walks Back Comments on Offers of Foreign Dirt amid Bipartisan Criticism
About two minutes and 17 seconds after liftoff, the previously flown first stage fell away, flipped around, restarted three engines to reverse course and headed back to Vandenberg.
The satellites, built by Maxar Technologies' MDA division, are created to observe Earth from sun-synchronous orbit using C-band synthetic aperture radar. Once in orbit, they will travel at speeds of around 16,900 miles per hour, completing a full circle of the Earth in approximately 96 minutes.
In March, that booster helped send SpaceX's Crew Dragon capsule toward the International Space Station.More news: FBI Assists Dominican Republic with Mysterious Deaths of Americans
The RADARSAT Constellation Mission is Canada's newest generation of radar Earth observation satellites that will contribute to a better understanding of Canada's land and natural resources. Each of the satellites has a life expectancy of 7 years. They have the capacity to capture an image of a given location on about 90 per cent of the world's surface, but they will be primarily used to keep tabs on Canadian territory for the federal government.
While Radarsat-2 and the earlier Radarsat-1 were single-satellite missions, RCM uses three spacecraft to increase the frequency of coverage and enable new applications for the data the satellites gather.
The images are used for a wide range of purposes, including monitoring sea ice, disaster management and agricultural and forestry management.More news: Mac Miller Joins Free Nationals and Kali Uchis on ‘Time’