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SpaceX Starlink flight lifts off in Florida; 2nd launch of day planned for California later
SpaceX Starlink flight lifts off in Florida; 2nd launch of day planned for California later
by Doug Cunningham
Washington DC (UPI) May 8, 2024

SpaceX on Wednesday launched 23 Starlink satellites from NASA's Kennedy Space Center Florida.

A second launch is set for Wednesday evening in California.

The Florida liftoff of 23 of the satellites had been pushed back to 2:42 p.m. from its originally scheduled lift-off of 11 a.m. EDT Wednesday. It was live-streamed.

As of Wednesday afternoon, the California launch from Vandenberg Space Force Base of 20 more Starlink satellites was still set for 10:48 p.m. EDT, with backups until 1:30 a.m. if needed.

The company's Falcon 9 rocket sent the 23 Starlink satellites into low-Earth orbit from Florida. It was the third flight for the first-stage booster supporting the mission. It was used previously to launch Crew-8 and another Starlink mission.

That booster landed on the drone ship A Shortfall of Gravitas in the Atlantic Ocean.

The planned California lift-off Wednesday evening Pacific Time will propel 20 Starlink satellites into low-Earth orbit. According to SpaceX, 13 of them will have Direct To Cell capabilities.

The booster used in the California mission will be its fourth flight. It previously launched USSF-62 and two Starlink missions.

When that booster stage separates from the rocket it will land on the drone ship Of Course I Still Love You in the Pacific Ocean.

The two planned Wednesday launches follow a Monday launch of 23 Starlink satellites from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida.

That one was delayed from the originally planned 12:36 p.m. to 2:14 p.m. and no explanation for the delay was given. The first stage booster used Monday was on its 15th flight.

SpaceX re-uses first-stage boosters to cut costs.

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SpaceX completes bicoastal launches, adding to Starlink's megaconstellation
Washington DC (UPI) May 03, 2024
SpaceX launched another group of 23 satellites from Kennedy Space Center on Thursday night via a Falcon 9 rocket, adding to the Starlink megacluster of Internet satellites now in low-Earth orbit. The launches have become nearly routine as have the return of reusable fuel cell booster rocket to a drone awaiting below. Thursday night, the booster, guided by short rocket bursts, returned from its mission after spending a million pounds of kerosene fuel in about 8 minutes, deployed triangular le ... read more

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