SpaceX sends Telstar satellite into space

Space Exploration Technologies Corp. launched a satellite for customer Telstar early Sunday, marking the 13th launch of the year for the closely held company led by Elon Musk.

SpaceX launched its Falcon 9 rocket carrying the payload from Space Launch Complex 40 in Florida at 1:50 a.m. local time.

The satellite was deployed approximately 32 minutes after liftoff and the rocket’s first stage later landed on the droneship named “Of Course I Still Love You” in the Atlantic Ocean, the company said on its website.

SpaceX is targeting roughly 30 missions this year, up from a record 18 in 2017.

The Hawthorne, California-based company’s valuation has climbed to about $25 billion, making it the third-most valuable venture-backed startup in the U.S. after Uber Technologies Inc. and Airbnb Inc.

Musk serves as chief executive officer of SpaceX and Tesla Inc., the electric-car maker.

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SpaceX sends Telstar satellite into space