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SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket aces record 13th flight in Starlink satellite launch

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At 12:09 p.m. EDT (1609 GMT), the two-stage Falcon 9 rocket lifted off from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, carrying 53 of SpaceX’s Starlink internet satellites into orbit. It was the first of three rocket missions SpaceX intends in three days from three different launch locations.

As planned, the 53 satellites were released into low Earth orbit 15.5 minutes after launch. But there was action before that: the Falcon 9’s first stage came down to Earth about 8.5 minutes after liftoff, landing vertically on the SpaceX drone ship A Shortfall of Gravitas, which was stationed in the Atlantic Ocean off the Florida coast.

It was the Falcon 9 first stage’s 13th launch and landing, setting a new SpaceX reuse record. A GPS satellite, a Turkish communications satellite, a variety of spacecraft on the Transporter 2 “rideshare” mission, and nine Starlink batches have all been launched with the launcher.

Constellation Satellite Starlink

For SpaceX and its wealthy founder and CEO, Elon Musk, such extensive re-flight is a top objective. Musk has stated numerous times that rapid and complete reuse is the key to humanity’s ability to colonize Mars and achieve a range of other lofty space goals.

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SpaceX’s constellation satellite is called Starlink. More than 2,700 Starlink craft have been launched into orbit(opens in new tab) by the corporation, and the number will continue to rise in the future; the next-generation version is already in development.

According to Space.com, Today’s flight was the first of a planned rocket triple-header for SpaceX, which also plans to launch a German military radar satellite on Saturday morning (June 18) and a commercial communications satellite early Sunday (June 19).

SpaceX has had a tremendously busy year, and this frantic 36-hour stretch will add to it. In 2022, the business launched 24 missions and 15 Starlink-specific flights.

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William is an avid book reader who also happens to be a writer. He writes about technologies and health to help businesses develop a better understanding of the new culture of remote working.