SpaceX launched one in every of its Falcon 9 rockets for the thirteenth time immediately (June 17), setting a brand new report for reuse.
The 2-stage Falcon 9 lifted off from NASA’s Kennedy Area Heart in Florida immediately at 12:09 pm EDT (1609 GMT), carrying 53 of SpaceX’s Starlink Web satellites into orbit. It was the primary of three rocket launches in three days from three completely different platforms that SpaceX plans to hold out.
All 53 satellites have been deployed to low Earth orbit about 15.5 minutes after launch, as deliberate. However there was additionally motion earlier than that: About 8.5 minutes after liftoff, the Falcon 9 first stage descended to Earth for a vertical touchdown on the SpaceX A Shortfall of Gravitas drone, which was parked within the Atlantic Ocean off to the Florida coast.
Associated: SpaceX’s Starlink mega-constellation launches in images
It was the thirteenth launch and touchdown of this Falcon 9 first stage, setting a brand new SpaceX reusability report. The booster beforehand helped carry a GPS satellite tv for pc, a Turkish communications satellite tv for pc, quite a lot of spacecraft on the Transporter 2 “share experience” mission and 9 batches of Starlink, in accordance with a SpaceX mission description. (opens in a brand new tab).
Such a broad evaluate is a large precedence for SpaceX and its billionaire founder and CEO, Elon Musk. Musk has repeatedly mentioned that fast and full reusability is the important thing breakthrough that may permit humanity to decide on Mars and attain quite a lot of different bold spaceflight feats.
Starlink is SpaceX’s Web satellite tv for pc constellation. The corporate has now launched greater than 2,700 Starlink ships into orbit. (opens in a brand new tab), and the quantity will proceed to extend sooner or later; the following era model of the community may finally include as much as 30,000 satellites (opens in a brand new tab).
In the present day’s mission kicked off a deliberate triple rocket for SpaceX, which additionally intends to launch a radar satellite tv for pc for the German navy on Saturday morning (June 18) and a industrial communications satellite tv for pc early Sunday (19 June). of June).
This intense 36-hour stretch will proceed a really busy 12 months for SpaceX. The corporate has already launched 24 missions in 2022, 15 of them devoted to Starlink flights.
Editor’s Notice: This story was up to date at 12:30 p.m.
Mike Wall is the creator of “on the market (opens in a brand new tab)(Grand Central Publishing, 2018; Illustrated by Karl Tate), a guide in regards to the seek for extraterrestrial life. Observe him on Twitter @migueldwall (opens in a new tab). Observe us on Twitter @Spacepointcom (opens in a new tab) or in Fb (opens in a brand new tab).