Fresh on the heels of its successful June 4 test flight of the Falcon 9 launch vehicle, Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) is enjoying a financial boost with its win in a hotly contested contract to put the next-generation Iridium communications satellites into orbit. The $492-million contract, announced June 16, covers an unspecified number of launches for Iridium Communications Inc., which recently announced a $2.1-billion contract with Thales Alenia Space to build the 72-spacecraft ...

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