SpaceX presses ahead with planned launch of more satellites

Katie Ramirez
January 30, 2020

Falcon 9 rocket, which was the star of the mission, was firstly named as B1051.3 by SpaceX. The latest launch makes a total of 242 satellites already reached the space.

Professional and amateur astronomers alike worry the reflectivity and radio emissions from the Starlink satellites, and rival constellations being built by competitors, will impact sensitive observations.

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will be launching the Starlink mission from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.

Elon Musk's private spaceflight company, SpaceX, has successfully launched the fourth batch of the Starlink Satellites into the orbit and also performed a rocket landing on January 29, 2020.

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SpaceX is now the operator of the world's largest active satellite constellation; there are now 180 Starlink satellites orbiting this here planet we call home.

The primary reason SpaceX wants to recover these fairings is financial: It can shave another $6 million or so off the cost of its launches by re-using previously flown fairings. Following stage separation, SpaceX will land Falcon 9's first stage on the "Of Course I Still Love You" droneship, which will be stationed in the Atlantic Ocean. SpaceX's two fast-moving fairing recovery boats - named "Ms. Tree and "Ms".

The company plans to send Starlink mega-constellation of 42,000 satellites into space, according to the regulatory filings by the company. As the company has come halfway to achieve the minimum coverage goal, the global internet service can start anytime this year.

"Twelve launches gets us connectivity with no gaps down to a latitude of roughly 25 degrees (north and south latitude)", SpaceX president Gwynne Shotwell told reporters late past year.

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