SpaceX’s push toward new delayed launch record

SpaceX Falcon 9 released

SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft, perched on the company’s Falcon 9 rocket, takes off from launch pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida, taking NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley to the International Space Station.


SpaceX’s eleventh launch in 2020, a launch of 57 Starlink satellites scheduled for Friday, has been postponed once again. “The team needed additional time for pre-launch payments, but Falcon 9 and the satellites are healthy,” SpaceX tweeted a couple of hours before the scheduled launch time.

The launch has not yet been rescheduled. Already postponed from Tuesday to Thursday, it will be the third in a series of Starlink missions from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The company’s 12th release of the year is tentatively planned for the following Tuesday.

With two more launches planned for June, SpaceX had scheduled the launch of five of its Falcon 9 rockets in about a month. Continuing this almost weekly launch rate would allow Elon Musk’s commercial space startup to set a company record for most launches in a year.

The last series of missions began with his Historic success that sends NASA astronauts into orbit on May 27, followed by three Starlink Launches and plans to power a GPS satellite on June 30.

SpaceX had its busiest year so far in 2018 with 21 launches and is now on track to eclipse that mark in 2020, perhaps reaching 38 launches for the full year if all of its plans work. The company hopes to continue packing its schedule with more takeoffs, with the goal of 70 missions in 2023, according to a draft submitted to the Federal Aviation Administration earlier this year.

Many of the launches will be Starlink missions, as SpaceX seeks to put tens of thousands of its small satellites into orbit this decade. The company has started Carrying out shared travel launches, making room for some commercial loads along with a batch of Starlink birds.

Starlink’s next launch is slated to be Starlink’s second ride, this time with two Earth observation microsatellites for Black Sky, a company that provides high-definition satellite imagery.

This would have been Starlink’s third launch in June alone, bringing the size of the growing constellation to nearly 600 satellites and closer to the threshold of 800 flying routers than Musk has said he would allow a limited broadband service to start..

SpaceX offers live streams of all of its releases, but if you want to watch it just go back here – we’ll embed the live stream below.

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