SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will launch the Starlink 26 mission with the next batch of 60 Starlink satellites. The rocket will lift off from Launch Complex 39A (LC-39A) at Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
Launch window begins at 03:01pm ET (07:01pm UTC)
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Starlink 26 will mark the 25th operational Starlink mission, boosting the total number of Starlink satellites launched to 1565, of which 1495 will still be in orbit around the Earth as of the date of the launch. Following stage separation, SpaceX will land Falcon 9’s first stage on the “Of Course I Still Love You” droneship, which will be stationed in the Atlantic Ocean, 633 km downrange.
Starlink is SpaceX’s internet communication satellite constellation. The Low-Earth orbit constellation will deliver fast, low-latency internet service to locations where ground-based internet is unreliable, unavailable, or expensive. The Falcon 9 Block 5 is SpaceX’s partially reusable two-stage medium-lift launch vehicle. Block 5 is the final iteration of the Falcon 9. The Falcon 9 contains 3 main components: a reusable first stage, an expendable second stage, and a reusable fairing.
The booster supporting this mission, B1049, has flown eight times. It previously supported the launch of Telstar 18 VANTAGE, Iridium-8, and six Starlink missions.
SpaceX is the first entity ever that recovers and reflies its fairings. SpaceX will attempt to recover both the active and passive half from the water with their recovery vessel Shelia Bordelon.
This will be the 13h launch for SpaceX in 2021, the 116th flight of a Falcon 9 rocket and the 62nd re-flight of a booster.
Courtesy of SpaceX
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