Spectacular SpaceX Rocket Launch Viewable from San Diego

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Written By Lori Walker

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A SpaceX rocket launched Friday night from the Santa Barbara County coast was once again visible across San Diego.

The launch took place at 8:14 p.m. from Vandenberg Space Force Base. The rocket headed south along the coast carrying a payload for the National Reconnaissance Office, which manages the U.S. spy satellite fleet.

After liftoff, the first-stage rocket booster is planned to land on a droneship at sea.

People in San Diego could see the rocket, especially since sunset was at 8:01 p.m. Friday, just before the launch window opened.

The rocket and its exhaust trail can be seen for hundreds of miles under clear and dark skies as it travels along the coastline. Launches after sunset and before sunrise usually offer the best views as the rocket catches sunlight against the darkened sky.

In 2023, SpaceX achieved a milestone by successfully launching 96 missions with its Falcon rockets, surpassing its previous record of 61 orbital launches in 2022.

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