Just 5 days after the successful In Flight Abort Test of the Crew Dragon Space Craft, SpaceX is set to send 60 more Starlink Satellites into low Earth orbit. This will be the 4th batch of satellites to leave Earth, making it the largest commercial satellite constellation. In fact, Starlink missions will be expected to take up the majority of SpaceX launches this year.
This comes right after the historic IFA (In Flight Abort) test of the Crew dragon capsule, where SpaceX and customer NASA deliberately destroyed a Falcon 9... for science! The Crew Dragon successfully aborted from the Falcon 9, before its inevitable fate, giving viewers a magnificent view of the explosion. Crew Dragon deployed its parachutes and was recovered from the Atlantic Ocean shortly after, making it a historic day in space flight. The next Crew Dragon flight will be its first crewed flight, projected to launch this year in between April and June.
As you can tell, this will be an extremely busy year for SpaceX, who also has 20 more Starlink missions planned for this year. The Falcon 9 rolled out of the hangar early Monday, January 20th, and went vertical on launch pad SLC 40 for its static fire prior to launch. Starlink 3 was originally scheduled to launch on the 21st, but due to bad weather in the recovery zone, was pushed to Friday January 24th. With an overall goal of 12,000 satellites in low Earth orbit by 2027, we can expect to see many, many more beautiful Falcon 9 launches like this one.
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UPDATE: Starlink 3 has scrubbed both Monday, January 27th and Tuesday, January 28th, Due to both strong upper level winds and poor weather conditions in the recovery zone. Sometimes launches take a lot of patience because the weather conditions need to be perfect in order to launch.
NOW TARGETING: Wednesday January 29th 9:06am EST.
As always, stay tuned for the latest updates and space flight news!
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