SpaceX launch and landing in California

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The company launched a Falcon 9 rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base in Southern California.

The 30th Space Wing says residents may see multiple engine burns by the first stage and there may be one or more sonic booms.

Minutes after launch, the rocket's second stage separated from the first-stage booster and continued rising spaceward.

But Sunday's flight marked the first time SpaceX attempted a landing at Vandenberg, a milestone made possible by extensive environmental and safety studies that concluded the noise and possible aftermath of a failure would not cause any significant damage or harm to area wildlife.

SpaceX used the same first stage for the Saocom-1A mission that launched 10 satellites for Iridium about 10-and-a-half weeks ago, also from Vandenberg. By launching after the sun has set at the launch site itself, this allows the rocket to quite literally catch up with the terminator and reenter sunlight while those on the ground at or around the pad experience twilight conditions.

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The launch is scheduled for shortly after 7:20 p.m., Vandenberg Air Force base officials said in an advisory.

If anything goes wrong during the launch and landing, there is a risk of explosion.

A look at Landing Zone 4, SpaceX's newest rocket landing site, at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.

The rocket, built by Elon Musk's SpaceX, was carrying the satellite SAOCOM 1A.

SAOCOM-1A's radar measurements will track soil-moisture levels, thereby aiding forecasts of crop yields. CONAE will operate the satellite as part of the Argentine-Italian System of Satellites with the Italian Space Agency, coordinating observations with Italy's four Cosmo-Skymed X-band SAR satellites. Its name is short for Satelite Argentino de Observacion Con Microondas.