HAWTHORNE, Calif. (AP) — SpaceX says it will launch a Thai telecommunications satellite into orbit aboard its Falcon 9 rocket.

It’s the latest international customer for Hawthorne, Calif.-based Space Exploration Technologies. SpaceX is the brainchild of PayPal co-founder Elon Musk.

The Thaicom 6 satellite will launch aboard a Falcon 9 from Cape Canaveral, Fla., sometime in 2013 to serve the growing satellite TV market in Asia. The exact value of the deal was not disclosed but SpaceX says a standard Falcon 9 flight costs $54 million.

SpaceX has won NASA contracts to test rockets and spacecraft that could do supply runs to the International Space Station once the space shuttle program winds down this year.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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