A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket takes off on the night of January 17 to 18, 2022, with 49 Starlink satellites on board. The flight is broadcast live.
Update: the flight is postponed due to weather constraints
The Starlink launch in a nutshell
- What ? Putting 49 Starlink satellites into orbit;
- When ? January 18, 2022, at 1:26 a.m. (Paris time);
- Where ? At Kennedy Space Center, Florida;
- What will we see? Liftoff of the Falcon 9 rocket.
What is SpaceX’s mission?
A little less than two weeks after its first takeoff of the year, SpaceX is organizing its second launch on the night of January 16 to 17 for the benefit of Starlink (and the third in general, after the space carpooling organized on the 13th). The fairing of the Falcon 9 rocket accommodates 49 satellites for this launch, which will further expand the constellation already deployed in orbit.
As of January 6, SpaceX has already launched 1,993 Starlink satellites. The 49 others who arrive will take the company above the symbolic milestone of 2,000. But not all of them are operational. On January 15, Elon Musk indicated that there were 1,469 assets, while there are a few hundred more in space awaiting activation. Moreover, as astronomers point out, there are also specimens who have been downgraded.
These telecommunications satellites, which are dispatched in low orbit around the Earth, a few hundred kilometers above sea level, should be more numerous in the years to come. In the long term, there will be tens of thousands. The goal is to provide Internet access worldwide, but today the service is only open in a few countries, including France.
SpaceX will use for this flight the first stage of a rocket that has already completed six other Starlink missions, as well as liftoffs for the benefit of putting a GPS III-3 satellite into orbit, a Turkish telecommunications satellite (Turksat 5A) and the Transporter-2 mission, which was a space carpool mission. The headdress has also been used for a Starlink mission.
When does the Falcon 9 rocket take off?
SpaceX plans to launch the mission on the evening of January 17, at 7:26 p.m. (local time). In France, the night will already be well advanced, as it will be 1:26 a.m. The rocket will launch from a launch pad located in Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on the east coast of the United States. If necessary, SpaceX has the option of retrying a shot next night at 1:04 a.m.
Where to watch the launch live?
The shot is streamed on SpaceX’s official website, as well as on its YouTube channel. It can be followed directly in the video embedded below.
(updating and raising the article in anticipation of the shooting)