Another successful lift-off and milestone achieved for Elon Musk’s space company
SpaceX welcomed back its Falcon 9 as the company caught its rocket head (payload fairings) using a large net in the middle of the Atlantic ocean. This is the third time in less than thirty days that SpaceX has successfully retrieved its rocket head marking a significant milestone for the company. With an additional launch currently scheduled for August 27, 2020.
The payload fairing – the rocket’s nose splits into two as it comes back from orbit, both of which are equipped with a parachute and autopilot guidance software for the recovery. The two boats to catch each of the two fairings, Ms. Tree and Ms. Chief patiently waited for the rocket to come back to Earth. As you can see from the video, the company makes retrieving the fairing look extremely relaxing and seamless (cue elevator music).
The Falcon 9, which is currently SpaceX’s largest rocket was launched on August 18, 2020 for the 40th time and this also marks a record-breaking 6 times that the Falcon has used the same booster. Eco-friendly and climate conscious, Musk has been praised for his ingenuity to recover and be able to build reusable rockets, which also significantly cuts expenses on the previously extreme high cost of space launches.
During the August 18, 2020 launch that took place at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, the latest batch of 58 satellites were sent to orbit for SpaceX’s Starlink broadband network. This marks the 11th batch of Starlink satellites sent to orbit. To-date, SpaceX has launched almost 600 satellites for its Starlink initiative.
Starlink is planning to deliver high speed broadband internet in the Northern United States and Canada As soon as September, in a limited test phase, then with full access during 2020. They then will expand for full global coverage by 2021.
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