SpaceX Launches 22 Starlink Satellites on Second Friday Mission

by Mayniaga

On Friday night, a Falcon 9 rocket successfully launched 22 Starlink satellites from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.

The launch was delayed due to upper-level winds and rescheduled to accommodate NASA's Falcon Heavy launch of the Psyche asteroid mission.

However, this improved to an 80 percent chance within the launch window.

The 45th Weather Squadron, part of the U.S. Space Force based at Cape Canaveral, initially predicted a 60 percent chance of favorable weather.

The Falcon 9 carried 22 second-generation satellites for the Starlink internet service, which has now exceeded two million subscribers in over 60 countries.

SpaceX had five backup launch opportunities, but they weren't needed.

The first stage booster, designated B1067, completed its 14th flight and successfully landed on the drone ship "A Shortfall of Gravitas" stationed in the Atlantic Ocean, approximately 420 miles east of the Bahamas and 675 km from Cape Canaveral.

The Falcon 9 rocket followed a southeast trajectory with a target orbit inclined at 43 degrees to the equator.

The separation of the satellite stack was scheduled to occur just over an hour into the flight.

To place the satellites in their designated orbit at 182 x 176 miles (293 x 284 km), two burns of the Falcon 9's second stage are required.

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