U.S. space firm SpaceX was expected to launch Bulgaria's first geostationary communication satellite with a partly used rocket in mid-June, the satellite's operator said Friday.
The U.S.-built, Bulgarian-owned satellite, BulgariaSat-1, will be delivered into orbit from Cape Canaveral, Florida on a previously flown Falcon 9 rocket booster, which allegedly could help cut the launch cost, Bulgaria's telecommunications company BulgariaSat said on Facebook.
It's "the same Falcon 9 rocket's first stage booster that successfully landed on a drone ship in the Pacific on 14th of January 2017" after successfully launching 10 satellites to low-Earth orbit, the company said.
The launch will mark the second time SpaceX has had a partly used rocket to fly again.
On March 30, the California-based company made history by launching a satellite for Luxembourg-based satellite operator SES with a Falcon 9 rocket booster that previously flew in a cargo resupply mission to the International Space Station.
Calling it a breakthrough in space technology, BulgariaSat said the reusable rocket "makes it possible for smaller countries and companies to launch their own satellites."
When launched, BulgariaSat-1 will be positioned into orbit at 36,000 kilometers above the Earth, providing television and communication services covering the Balkans and other European regions, the Bulgarian company previously said.