• Elon Musk’s aerospace company, SpaceX, launched a Falcon 9 rocket at 12:33 a.m. ET on Tuesday.
  • The launch is the company’s 50th of Falcon 9 since the rocket first flew in June 2010.
  • The mission flew a bus-size satellite to an orbit 22,300 miles above Earth.

While much of America was asleep, Elon Musk’s aerospace company, SpaceX, achieved a major company milestone on Tuesday.

In 2008, SpaceX was flirting with bankruptcy after three successive rocket failures. Now it has launched its workhorse rocket, the Falcon 9, for the 50th time as it moves to dominate the launch industry.

“Falcon 9 flight 50 launches tonight, carrying Hispasat for Spain,” Musk tweeted earlier on Monday. “At 6 metric tons and almost the size of a city bus, it will be the largest geostationary satellite we’ve ever flown.”