SpaceX sent another batch of 60 Starlink satellites to the lower Earth orbit (LEO) yesterday, this was the 7th Falcon 9 Starlink launch of this year (109 total). With this launch, the high-speed Starlink beta internet service network will expand to Germany and New Zealand — told Jessie Anderson during the live webcast, a lead manufacturing engineer at SpaceX.
The Starlink beta service will also be expanded in the UK. SpaceX initially launched the Starlink beta service in the United States and followed by Canada.
SpaceX is building a global Starlink satellite constellation that aims to provide high-speed low-latency internet service to far-flung areas of our planet where there is either no internet or the service is still low-bandwidth with high downtimes.
Since the Starlink satellites fly in LEO, the router data time between the user and the satellite also known as ‘latency’ is much lower than the satellites in the geostationary orbit. This enables Starlink to provide internet services like seamless video calls, which are usually not possible using other satellite systems.
Yesterday’s Falcon 9 Starlink launch was operated from the Space Launch Complex 40 (SLC-40) at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida on Thursday, March 11 at 3:13 a.m. EST.
Not to forget, the Falcon 9 rocket stands at 70 meters tall, and when it is fully fueled it holds just over 1 million pounds of propellent that the vehicle will burn through within 3 minutes after its liftoff.
The rocket lift-off was perfect as SpaceX has mastered this art with the Falcon 9 rocket booster. In a rare incident, the last month’s Falcon 9 first stage rocket booster failed to land back on the autonomous drone ship Of Course I Still Love You.
The drone ship used for yesterday’s Falcon 9 mission is named “Just Read the Instructions” and was located in the Atlantic Ocean. This was the 76th flawless landing of the Falcon 9 orbital-class 1st stage rocket booster.
SpaceX posted the following landing video on the company’s Twitter feed.
The Falcon 9 first stage rocket booster supporting this mission previously supported the launch of NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley to the International Space Station (the Crew Dragon Demo-2 mission), ANASIS-II, CRS-21, Transporter-1, and a Starlink mission.
SpaceX also posted the following confirmation video of the 60 Starlink satellites into LEO.
A recent FCC filing reveals that SpaceX wants to connect moving vehicles like large trucks, ships, aircraft, and RVs to the high-speed Starlink internet — exciting times for travelers and logistics companies are not too distant in the future.
The entire recorded live-stream of this 7th Starlink launch mission of this year can be watched in the following video that SpaceX published on its official YouTube channel.