Pair of rocket launches make for busy Thursday along Florida’s Space Coast

BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. — Florida’s Space Coast is set to be busy with a pair of rocket launches Thursday.

The first launch of a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket carrying the SBIRS GEO 6 mission for the U.S. Space Force took off just after 6 a.m.


That was the final launch for the Space Force’s SBIRS constellation, which will provide missile warnings and defense for the U.S. military.

For Laura Kretschmer, who is visiting Florida from Germany, the sunrise offered a beautiful backdrop while she watched the Atlas V rocket as it soared into space over the water.

“It was amazing. Like, all the lights and stuff,’” Kretschmer said.

Read: ULA, SpaceX set for pair of rocket launches from Florida’s Space Coast Thursday

In a rare occurrence along the coast, space exploration fans will get an opportunity to see another launch Thursday evening.

The second launch — a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying a lunar orbiter for South Korea — will take place from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.

See: Drone captures ULA Atlas V launch from the coast

The launch is set for 7:08 p.m. from Space Launch Complex 40.

You can watch the launch as it happens here and on WFTV Channel 9.

Click here to download the free WFTV news and weather apps, click here to download the WFTV Now app for your smart TV and click here to stream Channel 9 Eyewitness News live.

Matt Reeser

Matt Reeser, WFTV.com

Matt Reeser joined WFTV in 1998 as a news photographer and has worked for television stations in Kentucky and West Virginia.