For SpaceX, the addition of the large and reusable Falcon Heavy to its launch business gives the company the ability to bid on heavier payloads than it can with the smaller Falcon 9 rocket, opening up the market for big commercial satellites launches and national security missions.
The Falcon Heavy had been scheduled to lift off from the Kennedy Space Center on Wednesday but that was delayed because of strong winds in the upper atmosphere.
The Arabsat 6A communications satellite was built by Lockheed Martin.
A standard Falcon Heavy launch costs $90 million, according to the company's website, compared to $62 million for the Falcon 9.
SpaceX has launched its second supersized rocket from Florida, a year after sending up a sports auto on the initial test flight.
The Falcon Heavy rocket exerts 5.1 million pounds of thrust - that of more than a dozen jetliners, SpaceX said.
SpaceX's Falcon Heavy is by far the most powerful operational rocket in the world.More news: Doctors Discover Four Bees Living Under Woman's Eye, Feeding On Her Tears
Until SpaceX came along, boosters were discarded in the ocean after satellite launches.
Roughly three minutes after clearing the pad, Heavy's two side boosters separated from the core rocket for a synchronized landing at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, sparking boisterous cheers from SpaceX engineers in the company's Hawthorne, California headquarters.
The center core booster landed on a floating platform in the Atlantic Ocean about two minutes after that.
Musk used his own Tesla convertible in last year's demo and the red Roadster - with a mannequin, dubbed Starman, likely still at the wheel - remains in a solar orbit stretching just past Mars.
Since then, the USA military and private clients have signed contracts for Falcon Heavy launches, and NASA has raised the possibility it may use the rocket for its planned missions to the Moon. SpaceX is expected to attempt to land all three this week.
The job was to place the six-ton Arabsat-6A satellite into geostationary orbit about 22,500 miles (36,000 kilometers) above the Earth. The SpaceX team made sure to add more fluid this time.
The satellite is created to provide television, internet, telephone, and secure communications to customers in the Middle East.