SpaceX launches mega rocket year after debut with sports car

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SpaceX has launched its second supersized rocket from Florida, a year after sending up a sports car on the initial test flight. 

The new and improved Falcon Heavy blasted off Thursday evening with a communication satellite -- the rocket's first paying customer. The Falcon Heavy is the most powerful rocket in use today.

SpaceX also successfully landed two of the first-stage boosters back at Cape Canaveral, just like it did for the rocket's debut last year. The core booster made it safely back to earth on an ocean platform. That's the only part of the first mission that missed.

SpaceX chief Elon Musk put his own Tesla convertible on last year's demo. The red Roadster -- with a mannequin at the wheel -- remains in a solar orbit stretching just past Mars.

This rocket carried a commericial communications satellite into orbit for Saudi Arabia, called the Arabsat 6A.  It will deliver television, internet, and mobile phone services to the Middle East, Africa, and Europe. 

The launch happens just two weeks before the highly anticipated launch of the Falcon 9 rocket that will carry experiments, supplies and other materials to the International Space Station for astronauts.