SpaceX launches new batch of Starlink satellites to orbit
- United States
On Tuesday, May 30 at 11:02 p.m. PT, SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket lifted off from Space Launch Complex 4 East (SLC-4E) at Vandenberg Space Force Base, California, carrying 52 Starlink satellites to low-Earth orbit. The mission marked a remarkable achievement as the Falcon 9's first stage booster completed its fourteenth successful landing, adding to its impressive flight record.
The Starlink constellation consists of thousands of small satellites placed in low-Earth orbit. SpaceX aims to create a global broadband internet network that can provide high-speed connectivity to even the most remote corners of the planet.
The Falcon 9 booster used in this mission has supported a series of previous missions including the Crew-1 and Crew-2 missions, as well as the SXM-8, CRS-23, IXPE, Transporter-4, Transporter-5, Globalstar FM15, and ISI EROS C-3 missions. Now, it has added five Starlink missions to its impressive resume.
Following stage separation, Falcon 9's first stage landed on the "Of Course I Still Love You" droneship stationed in the Atlantic ocean. By recovering and refurbishing boosters, SpaceX aims to significantly decrease the expenses associated with launches and increase the frequency of space missions.
In parallel, SpaceX is gearing up for the 28th commercial resupply services mission for NASA to the International Space Station. The SpaceX Dragon spacecraft will deliver new science investigations, food, supplies, and equipment for the international crew.
The mission is scheduled to launch at 12:35 p.m. EDT Saturday, June 3, from Launch Complex 39A at the agency's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The spacecraft will spend about a month attached to the orbiting outpost before it returns to Earth with research and return cargo, splashing down off the coast of Florida.
You can watch the launch live on NASA Television, the NASA app, and the agency’s website.