SpaceX Starlink Launches Next 60 Satellites With Smooth Recovery

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SpaceX has come a step closer to making the Starlink project a reality. The space agency launched a new batch of 60 Starlink satellites in the orbit on April 22. Interestingly, SpaceX also nailed the Falcon 9 rocket landing at sea. The flight marked the 84th Falcon 9 flight, making it SpaceX's most flown US rocket in use today.

SpaceX Starlink Launches Next 60 Satellites With Smooth Recovery

 

SpaceX Starlink Project Goes On

The SpaceX Starlink satellites had a smooth sail for the launch, unlike the last launch which had a few hiccups. The launch marked the seventh operational Starlink mission, bringing the total number of satellites launched for the nascent broadband network up to 422.

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said that the company plans to deorbit two Starlink test satellites that were launched in 2018. He also noted that at least 400 Starlink craft are needed before SpaceX can begin to roll out minimal internet coverage. Plus, at least 800 satellites are required to provide moderate coverage. From the looks of it, Starlink's internet service could start later this year.

Going into the details, once the rocket reaches a certain point in its ascent, the two pieces that make up SpaceX fairings are jettisoned and fall back to Earth. Typically, these pieces are discarded in the ocean and discarded. However, this time, SpaceX has now successfully recovered more than 50-first stage boosters, another milestone for the space company.

 

Adding to the success rate, the liftoff marked another milestone for the Falcon 9 booster. The rocket landed on a floating platform at the sea, which completed the company's 51st successful recovery. At the same time, getting Starlink up and running certainly involves more satellites in the orbit. SpaceX needs to gain approval for its user terminal and the process is already underway.

SpaceX Future Projects

Apart from the Starlink project, SpaceX also has a couple of exciting missions lined up. For one, SpaceX is going to debut its manned test flight to the International Space Station. NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley will board the SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule to be a part of the first American spaceship to lift off after a decade.

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