Rocket Launch Schedule for November 2020

1st Nov 2020
Rocket Launch

2020 is coming to an end, yet space agencies and companies are not slowing down but only expanding their plans for November rocket launches. Nine launches out of sixteen planned actually took place in October. Traditionally, there were changes due to weather, unavailability of equipment and other reasons, but fortunately, there were no failures as had happened regularly since July.

15 launches have already been officially announced for November, plus eight more announced, but not specified yet (TBD). Let’s take a closer look.

November 5th – ULA Atlas V launch

ULA Atlas V
ULA Atlas V

Atlas V will launch a secret spacecraft for the US National Reconnaissance Office. It will be the first flight of the modification with the new GEM-63 Northrop Grumman solid-propellant engines, instead of those from the Aerojet Rocketdyne AJ-60A. The launch has been postponed from September for the third time. The last delay is from November 3rd.

November 6th – SpaceX Falcon 9 launch

SpaceX Falcon 9
SpaceX Falcon 9

Elon Musk’s rocket will launch the fourth GPS navigation satellite built by Lockheed Martin Corporation for the US Air Force. Falcon will launch from Cape Canaveral during a 15-minute window that opens at 23:24 GMT. The launch has been repeatedly delayed throughout the year, and this one will also depend on weather conditions.

China Long March 6 launch

China Long March 6
Long March 6

The Chinese Long March 6 light rocket will launch 10 ÑuSat remote sensing satellites for Satellogic, Argentine satellite manufacturer. The launch will take place from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center in the Chinese province of Shanxi.

November 7th – India PSLV launch

EOS 1 launching PSLV-C49 Satellite
EOS 1 launching PSLV-C49 Satellite

The Indian PSLV-C49 Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle will launch the EOS 1 (ex RISAT-2BR2) radar satellite for the Indian Space Research Organization and four Kleos Scouting Mission nanosatellites for the Luxembourg-based company, Kleos Space. Several Lemur 2 CubeSats for Spire Global will be launched as well. The launch has been postponed several times since last December.

November 14th – Arianespace Vega launch

Arianespace Vega
Arianespace Vega

The Arianespace Vega rocket will launch the SEOSat-Ingenio Earth observation satellite, built by Airbus Defense and Space for the Spanish Centre for the Development of Industrial Technology and ESA, and the Taranis research satellite for the French space agency CNES. Taranis will study energy flows between the Earth’s atmosphere and space during a thunderstorm. The launch will take place at the Kourou Space Center in French Guiana. It was delayed since June due to COVID-19.

November 14th – SpaceX Falcon 9 Crew Dragon launch

SpaceX Falcon 9 Crew Dragon
SpaceX Falcon 9 Crew Dragon Spacecraft

SpaceX will launch its first operational Crew Dragon mission to the ISS, called Crew-1, from Kennedy Space Center. NASA astronauts Michael Hopkins, Victor Glover, Shannon Walker, and Soichi Noguchi of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency will join the flight. The Crew Dragon will land into the sea. The launch has been delayed four times since September.

November 18th – SpaceX Falcon 9

SpaceX Falcon 9
SpaceX Falcon 9

One of the failed launches in October was postponed and is now in the November rocket launch schedule. Falcon 9 will launch the mystery spy satellite NROL-108 for the US National Reconnaissance Office. The first stage is expected to fly back and land at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

November 25th – Russia. Angara-A5

Angara-A5 heavy rocket
Angara-A5 heavy rocket

The Angara-A5 heavy rocket belonging to Roscosmos will make its second test orbital flight to determine the compatibility of the upper stage with the carrier rocket. The launch will be carried out from the Plesetsk spaceport. It has been postponed since last December. Surprisingly, the first flight of Angara-A5 took place in 2014. After that, the rocket was not used since then.

November 29th – Japan. H-IIA rocket launch

Japan. H-IIA rocket
Japan. H-IIA rocket

The Japanese H-IIA rocket will launch Japan’s first optical data relay satellite with a laser communication system into geosynchronous orbit. The launch will be made from Japan’s Tanegashima Space Center in a two-hour window between 7.15 and 9.15 GMT.

One more Falcon 9 launch will complete the announced November rocket launches. The rocket will take the communication satellite Turksat 5A to orbit for the Turkish satellite operator.

Besides, the restless Elon Musk plans to launch another batch of Starlink satellites and the Sentinel 6A satellite of the joint ESA, NASA, and CNES mission in November.

In addition to SpaceX, the Russian Soyuz rocket for Arianespace, another Chinese LongMarch, Rocket Lab’s Electron, and Virgin Orbit’s LauncherOne can also be found in the November launch schedule. However,  the exact dates have not been announced yet.

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