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SpaceX Falcon 9 breaks record, launches and lands for 16th time

SpaceX Falcon 9 breaks record, launches and lands for 16th time

A record-breaking Falcon 9 was successfully launched from Space Launch Complex-40 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station to deliver 22 V2 mini Starlink satellites into orbit.

Originally intending to launch just before sunrise on Sunday morning local time, SpaceX moved the launch time a few times before launching the Starlink Group 6-5 missions while the weather was clear.

The 22 advanced V2 mini Starlink satellites were launched on a southeast trajectory into a 43-degree orbital inclination. The satellites were deployed exactly one hour after launch from the Space Coast. After deployment, there are now 4,768 Starlink satellites sent into orbit by SpaceX.


While only 22 of the V2 mini satellites were launched, they are capable of providing up to 4 times more capacity than older versions of the satellite. The Starlink network now has more than 1.5 million users, so the increased capacity is needed to accelerate the Starship program that will eventually launch the larger full-size V2 Starlink satellites.

The first stage to launch this mission was Booster 1058, which broke the record on its 16th launch. This booster first launched the Demo-2 mission for NASA, reviving the ability to send American astronauts to space from America for the first time in years.

B1058 will launch several commercial payloads and now 11 Starlink missions. This booster has carried 2 NASA astronauts, a total of 617 Starlink satellites and 243 commercial payloads thanks partly to the Transporter rideshare mission.


SpaceX recently gave the green light to fly the flight-proven booster that has carried it on 15 missions and will reevaluate again once the booster reaches the 20 launch mark. Elon Musk has stated that he would like to see the Falcon 9 capable of launching 100 times and with the proper upgrades, it appears that the Falcon 9 will exceed that capability.

Fairing parts were also being reused in this mission, with both parts flying for the 9th time, representing another significant savings for the company.

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