Update: 10:57 pm EDT:
SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket lifted off from Launch Complex 39A at 10:47 PM EDT (0247 UTC), marking the historic 62nd orbital launch this calendar year. The mission broke its own orbital launch record in 2022 when it launched 61 orbital missions in a full year.
In a post on his social media site X, SpaceX founder Elon Musk said the company is “targeting 10 Falcon flights in a month.” [the] 12 per month at the end of this year and next year.
The first stage booster supporting this mission, B1073, has completed its 10th launch and landing to date. It was the 24th Starlink mission launched from LC-39A and SpaceX’s 69th launch from that pad to date.
UPDATE 6:56 pm EDT:
SpaceX is now targeting a T-0 liftoff time of 10:47 pm EDT (0247 UTC). This was 90 minutes before the scheduled splashdown time of the Crew-6 astronauts and the astronauts aboard the Crew Dragon Endeavour.
SpaceX has an additional backup time of September 3 at 11:05 PM EDT (0305 UTC). There are also five backup opportunities between 6:59 pm EDT (22:59 UTC) on Monday, September 4 and 10:39 pm EDT (0239 UTC on September 5).
A Falcon 9 rocket prepares Sunday for SpaceX’s 62nd orbital launch of the year. The previous record was set in 2022 by the company with 61 launches. Liftoff from Pad 39A at Kennedy Space Center with the 21 Starlink satellites is currently targeted for 9:56 pm EDT (0156 UTC).
SpaceX has launched a rocket into orbit on average every four days so far this year. It made nine Falcon 9 launches in August. A total of 62 publications in a calendar year would be the highest number ever achieved by a commercial publishing company.
“We are aiming for 10 Falcon flights a month by the end of this year, and then 12 flights a month next year,” SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk said in a post on social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter.
SpaceX’s 62nd launch of the year will carry 21 of the so-called V2 mini satellites for the company’s Starlink Internet service.
Seconds after clearing the launch pad, Falcon 9 will curl up in a southeasterly path, aiming for an orbit inclined 43 degrees to the equator. After a two-and-a-half-minute separation from the second stage, the first stage booster will land on the drone ship ‘Just Read the Instructions’, which will be stationed about 390 miles east of the Atlantic in the Bahamas. 627 km from Cape) The first stage booster, tail number B1077, is on its 10th mission.
Two burns of the second stage are required to place the satellites in the required circular orbit. Separation of 21 starlings occurs approximately one hour after five minutes of launch.
It will be the 16th launch of this next-generation Starlink satellite model, which is larger and has four times the bandwidth of previous versions. The full-sized V2 Starlink satellites were to be launched by SpaceX’s fully reusable Starship vehicle, but the delayed launch of Starship led the company to develop a shortened version of the satellites so they could be launched on the Falcon 9.
To date, SpaceX has launched a total of 5,027 Starlink satellites into orbit, according to figures compiled by Jonathan McDowell, an astronomer at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, which maintains the spaceflight database.
In early May, SpaceX announced that Starlink had more than 1.5 million subscribers. The company’s internet presence is in more than 60 countries.
Watch live footage from the cap on our launch pad live stream: