SpaceX Launch Prompts Space Coast TFRs

 - May 26, 2020, 1:45 PM

Tomorrow’s planned launch of a SpaceX rocket with a crewed Dragon capsule marking the U.S.’s return to manned spaceflight has prompted a pair of TFRs that will close off sections of Central Florida’s Space Coast airspace to general aviation operators. Both rings of the TFRs center on the launch site—lat. 28°37’00” N long. 080°37’00” W.

The first set of VIP TFRs—0/3454 and 0/3454, to be in effect from 12:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. EDT tomorrow—will have a 30-nm inner ring and a 40-nm outer ring. A second set of VIP TFRs—0/3456 and 0/3457—with 12-nm inner and 32-nm outer rings will take effect just as the first one expires and last until 3:59 a.m. EDT on Thursday. Tomorrow’s SpaceX launch is scheduled for 4:33 p.m. EDT.

According to the FAA notams, the outer rings are generally limited to aircraft arriving or departing local airfields and aircraft must also be on an active IFR or filed VFR flight plan and be squawking a discrete code assigned by ATC. Operations in the inner ring are off-limits to general aviation aircraft not participating in the Twelve-Five Standard Security Program or conducting an emergency/lifesaving flight.