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SpaceX Launches 54 Starlink Satellites Into Orbit Following Weather Delays

   DailyWire.com
A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying the Starlink 4-20 mission, launches from Space Launch Complex 40 at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida, on September 4, 2022.
CHANDAN KHANNA/AFP via Getty Images

SpaceX launched 54 Starlink satellites into orbit on Sunday evening following five days of weather delays.

The Falcon 9 rocket carried the satellites into low Earth orbit, releasing them just 15.5 minutes into the flight that departed from Florida’s Space Launch Complex 40 (SLC-40) at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.

“This was the sixth launch and landing of this Falcon 9 first stage booster, which previously launched CRS-22, Crew-3, Turksat 5B, Crew-4, CRS-25, and now one Starlink mission,” SpaceX noted in a description of the mission.

The Elon Musk-led company confirmed the deployment of the Starlink devices, which are designed to provide internet communications to areas outside of traditional coverage reached by mobile phone networks. A live stream of the liftoff was provided online for viewers, with more than 220,000 views as of Monday morning.

The Falcon 9’s first stage booster returned to the Just Read the Instructions drone ship, a floating landing pad off the coast of Florida in the Atlantic Ocean.

The private space flight company also provided a video of the satellites being released into orbit, offering multiple camera views of the launch and flight.

SpaceX has now conducted 180 total launches since its start, with 118 total reflights in its pursuit of reusable rocket technology, according to its website. The Sunday launch also follows a mission on September 10 that sent 34 Starlink satellites into orbit along with the AST SpaceMobile’s BlueWalker 3 satellite.

The company has now sent more than 3,200 satellites into orbit, with approval for up to 12,000 Starlink devices. Another 30,000 satellites are under consideration through an application with an international regulator, according to Space.com.

The launch was also part of a recent surge in activities for SpaceX. The company ended August with an announcement that NASA had agreed to a $1.4 billion deal for five additional astronaut missions to the International Space Station (ISS).

“NASA has awarded five additional missions to Space Exploration Technologies Corporation (SpaceX) of Hawthorne, California, for crew transportation services to the International Space Station as part of the agency’s Commercial Crew Transportation Capability (CCtCap) contract,” NASA said in a statement.

The additional plans bring NASA’s total contract value with SpaceX to approximately $4.93 billion. The agreement also allows for the potential of adding additional human flight services in the future.

SpaceX and T-Mobile also announced an agreement last month in an effort to eliminate cellphone dead zones. Using Starlink satellites, Musk’s company plans to offer service in the half-million square miles currently unreached by networks in the United States.

“The important thing about this is that it means there are no dead zones anywhere in the world for your cell phone,” Musk tweeted.

Musk added that the second-generation satellites supporting the network would launch in 2023 and said that Tesla vehicles would be able to use the service.

SpaceX has also signed a recent agreement with Royal Caribbean to offer Starlink internet services on cruise ships. The service is expected to roll out during the first quarter of 2023.

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