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SpaceX Set for New Florida Launch, Pending Weather

The Space Launch Delta 45 weather squadron forecast predicts only a 50 percent chance for favorable launch conditions with thunderstorms threatening the Space Coast in the afternoon and evening.

(TNS) — SpaceX is slated to launch from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station today on another Starlink mission.

The Falcon 9 rocket with 53 of the company’s internet satellites is set to lift off from Space Launch Complex 40 at 3:21 p.m. with a backup opportunity Saturday at 2:59 p.m.

The Space Launch Delta 45 weather squadron. forecast predicts only a 50% chance for favorable launch conditions with thunderstorm threatening the Space Coast in the afternoon and evening. A 24-hour delay would see better weather with a 70% chance of favorable conditions.

The booster on this flight is making its ninth launch and will attempt to land on the SpaceX droneship A Shortfall of Gravitas in the Atlantic Ocean.

This flight marks the 37th overall launch attempt in 33 weeks this year including 16 from Canaveral, another 12 from nearby Kennedy Space Center and eight from Vandenberg Space Force Base in California. The Elon Musk company surpassed its then-record 31 launches set in 2021 back on July 22 and is on pace to average more than one launch a week by the end of 2022.

It’s also the 23rd launch for Starlink this year, and 57th overall since the first operational deployment in 2019, with more than 3,000 satellites sent to orbit, according to statistics tracked by astronomer Jonathan McDowell.

It still has several more Starlink missions planned as its growing internet constellation has approval from the Federal Communications Commission to maintain up to 4,408 of the 570-pound satellites that orbit at around 341 miles altitude. SpaceX is seeking further FCC approval to grow that to about 30,000 with future launches on board its in-the-works Starship rocket.

The service is part of the company’s revenue-generating plan to support Musk’s long-term goal of sending humans to and establishing a colony on Mars.

Since 2008, SpaceX has had 174 successful launches and managed the recovery of 136 of its boosters among both Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy rockets, having reflown those boosters 112 times.

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