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SpaceX wins NASA launch contract
Posted: Sat, Jul 13, 2019, 8:00 PM ET (0000 GMT)
SpaceX won a contract to launch a small NASA mission originally designed to go on a much smaller rocket. NASA announced Monday it will launch its Imaging X-ray Polarimetry Explorer (IXPE) on a Falcon 9 in April 2021 at a total cost of $50.3 million. That price, lower than other recent NASA launch contracts with SpaceX, is enabled by the use of a previously flown first stage. IXPE, which weighs only about 300 kilograms, was designed originally to launch on a Pegasus XL, but the cost of the Falcon 9 contract is less than what NASA paid several years ago for its latest Pegasus launch.
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