In a historic mission, SpaceX has launched 58 satellites into orbit on June 13, 2020. The satellites are aboard a Falcon 9 rocket, and the launch took place from Cape Canaveral in Florid in the US.
The mission was scheduled to take place on June 12, however, for some difficulties, it was pushed back to a day after. As of yet, neither NASA nor SpaceX has said anything about the reason behind the delay.
The launch of the 58 new satellites marks the 9th mission in support of the constellation of networked satellites known as Starlink.
There is a discrepancy between the number of satellites that SpaceX had previously claimed to launch and the tweet made after the successful launch. The website stated that SpaceX is planning to launch 60 Starlink satellites but the Tweet said that the company launched 58 satellites.
SpaceX recently tweeted, “Targeting Saturday, June 13 at 5:21 a.m. EDT for the launch of 58 Starlink satellites and 3 @planetlabs spacecraft – the first SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program launch.”
SpaceX rockets are currently under a ‘ride-sharing’ program which means that the company will carry spacecraft into orbit for other companies.
SpaceX’s Twitter feed is flooded with updates regarding the status of the launched rockets. SpaceX’s tweet announced that Falcon 9’s first stage has landed on the Of Course I Still Love You drone ship, and that all the Planet Labs SkySats have successfully deployed. Overall, as per the company’s official Twitter, all the 59 satellites have successfully been deployed.
This historic launch will not be the only thing coming from SpaceX in the recent near future. After the launch of the three Planet SkySat, SpaceX will take another Falcon 9/Starlink mission which is scheduled to take place in July.
The next mission is supposed to carry Planet’s final three SkySats. If the July mission becomes successful, the company will have completed its mission to deploy the company’s fleet of 21 commercial high-resolution Earth observation satellites.