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A SpaceX Falcon 9 lifts off from Launch Pad 39-A at Kennedy Space Center, May 4, 2021.

A SpaceX Falcon 9 lifts off from Launch Pad 39-A at Kennedy Space Center, May 4, 2021. (Joe Burbank, Orlando Sentinel/TNS)

VANDENBERG SFB, Calif. (Tribune News Service) — A SpaceX rocket carrying a National Reconnaissance Office mission will blast off from Vandenberg Space Force Base this month.

The rocket launch is scheduled for April 15 between 5:59 a.m. and 7:25 a.m., according to a Vandenberg news release.

The aerospace company's Falcon 9 rocket will take off from the base's Space Launch Complex-4 East. Col. Rob Long, Space Launch Delta 30 commander, will be the launch decision authority, according to the release.

The mission is the first NRO mission to reuse a SpaceX rocket booster, according to the release. It is also the second Falcon 9 launch procured through a National Security Space Launch contract to launch rockets from the Western Range (meaning the West Coast).

According to the release, as the SpaceX rocket's first-stage booster re-enters the atmosphere to return to the landing zone, people around the Central Coast could potentially hear multiple sonic booms as the vehicle breaks the sound barrier.

A sonic boom occurs from the shock waves of an aircraft or launch vehicle traveling faster than the speed of sound, making a noise similar to a clap of thunder or an explosion.

This will be the third rocket launch from the Central Coast military base this year.

(c)2022 The Tribune (San Luis Obispo, Calif.)

Visit The Tribune (San Luis Obispo, Calif.) at www.sanluisobispo.com

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