SpaceX warns of sonic boom after next launch in Florida

SpaceX postpones launch of secret US government payload

One is the moment when the rocket lands back on Earth, and the other is the moment when the payload successfully separates in space.

If successful, it would mark the eighth time the company will have landed at Landing Zone 1. It's not even known which part of the federal government the payload belongs to.

SpaceX is poised to launch on Thursday a secretive payload known as Zuma for the US government, though the nature of the mission and the agency behind it remain a mystery. The Zuma is created to be launched into low-Earth orbit, which is why some describe it as a satellite that Northrop Grumman built for a still to be identified organization.

What we don't know about the secretive payload is much more significant than what we do know.

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The mission, code named "Zuma", is a Falcon-9 rocket launch, but it is unclear what the rocket is carrying. However, Zuma has yet to have any agency, government or otherwise, claim the payload in any public way.

Since earning certification from the Air Force to launch national security payloads-typically spy satellites and military communications satellites-SpaceX has flown two military missions.

Delayed by a day, the Zuma spacecraft is now set to launch on Thursday between 8 p.m. and 10 p.m., from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida, according to the SpaceX website. Some people along Florida's coast will hear a loud sonic boom as the rocket returns from space, which is probably more than we'll ever officially hear about what Zuma actually is.

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