Falcon 9 booster B1046
|Falcon 9 booster B1046|
|B1046 lifting off for the first time on Bangabandhu-1 mission|
|Role||First stage of orbital rocket|
|National origin||United States|
|Type||Falcon 9 first-stage booster|
|First flight||May 11, 2018 (Bangabandhu-1)|
In October 2016, Elon Musk announced the Falcon 9 Block 5, which featured revisions such as increased thrust, improved landing legs, and upgrades for easier reuse, including thermal protection on the side of the vehicle and a reusable heat shield at the base to protect the engines and plumbing. 
After a year of delays, B1046 was completed and transported to SpaceX's McGregor facility for testing in preparation for its maiden flight.
This Falcon 9 was first launched on May 11, 2018, carrying Bangabandhu-1, Bangladesh's first geostationary communications satellite. This marked the 54th flight of the Falcon 9 and the first flight of the Falcon 9 Block 5. After completing a successful ascent, B1046 separated from the second stage and landed on the drone ship Of Course I Still Love You. This marked the 11th successful landing on OCISLY and the 25th successful landing of the Falcon 9.
After inspection and refurbishment, B1046 was launched a second time on August 7, 2018, carrying the Telkom-4 (Merah Putih) satellite. The Telkom-4 mission marked the first time an orbital-class rocket booster launched two GTO missions. This was also the first re-flight of a Block 5 booster.
Four months after the Telkom-4 mission, B1046 arrived at Vandenberg Air Force Base to support of the SSO-A mission. Following delays for additional satellite checks, liftoff occurred from SLC-4E on December 3, 2018. This marked the first time that the same orbital-class booster flew three times. While the mission profile allowed for the booster to return to the launch site, it landed offshore on the drone ship Just Read The Instructions due to vibration concerns for a Delta IV Heavy and its NRO payload awaiting launch at nearby SLC-6.
|Flight #||Launch date (UTC)||Mission #||Payload||Pictures||Launch pad||Landing location||Notes|
|1||May 11, 2018||54||Bangabandhu-1||KSC LC-39A||Of Course I Still Love You (ASDS)||First flight of a Block 5 booster
|2||August 7, 2018||60||Merah Putih||CCAFS SLC-40||Of Course I Still Love You (ASDS)||First reflight of a Block 5 booster|
|3||December 3, 2018||64||Spaceflight SSO-A (SmallSat Express)||VAFB SLC-4E||Just Read The Instructions (ASDS)||First third flight of the same orbital-class booster
|Flight #||Launch date (UTC)||Launch Pad||Mission||Notes|
|4||NET December 2019||KSC LC-39A||Crew Dragon In-Flight Abort Test ||High-speed abort test of Crew Dragon; booster will be destroyed in flight.|
B1046 records and achievements
- First Block 5 booster to fly 
- Launched Bangladesh's first geostationary communications satellite 
- First re-flight of a Block 5 booster 
- First booster to fly two missions to geosynchronous transfer orbit 
- First orbital-class booster to fly three times 
- The only Falcon 9 to have launched from all three of SpaceX's active launch sites as of November 2019
- Largest batch of satellites launched from the United States 
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- "Spacex Falcon 9 Block 5 targets 24 hour turnaround, no refurbishment reuse and relaunch a dozen times". NextBigFuture.com. 2017-08-29. Retrieved 2018-12-05.
- "Bangabandhu-1 sucessfully [sic] launched by first Block 5 Falcon 9 – SpaceX's goal of affordable access to space". www.nasaspaceflight.com. Retrieved 2018-11-14.
- "Falcon 9 launch timeline with Merah Putih". spaceflightnow.com. Retrieved 2018-11-14.
- "SpaceX Delays Historic Third Launch of Used Rocket (and Its Flock of Satellites)". Space.com. Retrieved 2018-12-03.
- "SpaceX official says company about to launch a Falcon 9 for the third time". Ars Technica. Retrieved 2018-11-14.
- "SpaceX's Crew Dragon spacecraft suffers an anomaly during static fire testing at Cape Canaveral". April 20, 2019. Retrieved April 21, 2019.
- "First Block 5 Falcon 9 static fires ahead of Bangabandhu-1 launch – NASASpaceFlight.com". Retrieved 2018-12-05.
- "SpaceX Falcon 9 launches Merah Putih for first Block 5 reflight – NASASpaceFlight.com". Retrieved 2018-12-05.
- "SpaceX Falcon 9 launches SSO-A multi-sat mission". www.nasaspaceflight.com. Retrieved 2018-12-04.