spacex zuma launch pad
SpaceX tweeted this photo of the Falcon 9 and the Zuma on the launch pad prior to the launch. SpaceX

Update, Friday 11:30 a.m. EST: The Falcon 9 launch of the Zuma mystery payload has been delayed to an unannounced day. A post on the Kennedy Space Center's website said that the launch had been delayed and thanks viewers for their patience. SpaceX's website said, "Though we have preserved the range opportunity for Friday, November 17th, we will take the time we need to complete the data review and will then confirm a new launch date."

While Elon Musk was on the West Coast getting ready for the reveal of the Tesla Semi, one of his Falcon 9 rockets was scheduled to launch from Kennedy Space Center’s Launch Pad 39A carrying a secret payload. But the launch was scrubbed and moved to Friday instead.

The rocket will launch the Zuma payload, a mysterious payload with a secret owner. The launch was originally scheduled for Tuesday but was delayed and teams were doing extra “assurance work.” The rocket and the payload were on the launchpad healthy on Tuesday night however, a tweet from SpaceX said.

Friday’s launch window opens at 8 p.m. EST and will last until 10 p.m. at LC-39A, according to SpaceX. There was no backup launch time on the schedule as of Thursday evening incase for some reason the launch could not be completed on Friday. After the rocket launches and deploys the Zuma payload to space, the first stage of the Falcon 9 will make a return trip to Earth where it will attempt a landing at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

Usually SpaceX reveals information about the payload in the press releases that are posted to the company’s website on the day of the launch. But the release posted on Thursday featured no section of information about the payload, just about the launch vehicle and facility.

There will be no tickets available for visitors to the complex to purchase and any visitors who had previously purchased tickets would be issues a refund. Most SpaceX launches are open to the public with purchased tickets but this launch is not. “ Availability of viewing opportunities and locations is dependent upon the scheduled launch time and is subject to NASA and U.S. Air Force approval,” says the KSC website.

Federal Communication Commission filings from September show that the company was planning to launch the Zuma payload sometime before April. There was one filing for the launch of the rocket and its payload and one filing for the recovery of the first stage of the rocket. SpaceX routinely completes launches for the federal government, something it’s contracted to do. The Falcon 9 is used frequently to launch supplies to the International Space Station or to launch satellites. But if this launch is of a government payload, it’s kept under wraps for a reason.

The launch will live stream on SpaceX’s website as well as on YouTube, or you can view it here: