- SpaceX’s first Starlink mission of 2021 has been postponed twice, delaying the launch of 60 internet satellites.
- The launch, first scheduled for Monday morning, will now take place on Wednesday at 8:02 a.m. EST.
- This will be the 17th Starlink mission. SpaceX, founded by Elon Musk, wants to envelop Earth with up to 42,000 internet satellites.
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SpaceX’s first Starlink launch of 2021 has been delayed due to bad weather and safety inspections.
The Falcon 9 rocket, holding 60 Starlink satellites ready to beam internet down to Earth, was scheduled for blast-off on Monday at 8:45 a.m. EST from Kennedy Space Centre in Florida, but “unfavourable weather conditions in the recovery area” prevented the launch.
It was rescheduled for Tuesday, and has since been pushed back again.
The launch is now set for Wednesday at 8:02 a.m. EST, SpaceXtweeted. This is “to allow additional time for pre-launch inspections,” the company said.
This will be the 17th time that SpaceX has sent Starlink satellites into space. Its goal for Starlink is to provide global broadband coverage from up to 42,000 satellites.
So far, Elon Musk’s aerospace company has more than 1,000 internet satellites in orbit, according to Space.com. The company has already begun testing its space-based internet service through its “Better Than Nothing Beta,” which is underway in the US, southern Canada, and parts of Europe. Some users are reporting speeds of more than 200 megabits per second.
Regulators in the UK have given the green light to Starlink, and some users have already received their beta kits.
Once the Falcon 9 has left the Earth’s atmosphere, the rocket’s first stage will peel off and land on the “Just Read the Instructions” recovery droneship, positioned in the Atlantic Ocean.
The Falcon 9 rockets are known for their reusability â€” this will be the eighth flight for this particular Falcon 9 rocket booster.
The rocket booster’s most recent launch was December 13, when it took SiriusXM’s new radio satellite into orbit. The six other missions include the RADARSAT Constellation Mission in June 2019, the Crew Dragon’s first mission in March 2019, and four Starlink missions.
You can watch the launch of the Falcon 9 rocket via SpaceX.