This Falcon 9 rocket launched in November 2019, carrying 60 Starlink satellites.
The latest SpaceX Starlink launch is now set for Saturday morning from Cape Canaveral in Florida.
Blastoff was originally set for June but has been delayed a few times, most recently due to bad weather on Wednesday.
“Standing down from today’s mission due to weather,” the company tweeted Wednesday, about 10 minutes before the scheduled launch time.
Standing down from todays mission due to weather; proceeding through the countdown until T-1 minute for data collection. Will announce a new target launch date once confirmed on the Range
SpaceX (@SpaceX) July 8, 2020
If it finally gets off the ground Saturday at 8 a.m. PT (11 a.m. local time) as planned, the Falcon 9 rocket’s payload will include the first batch of the company’s broadband satellites equipped with a sunshade to reduce their brightness.
Since Elon Musk’s company began launching the small satellites over a year ago, astronomers and other observers have been surprised and even disturbed by the amount of sunlight the orbiting routers reflect, often interfering with scientific observations.
Musk and SpaceX have been working with major astronomical organizations on the problem and pledged to fix the issue as they ramp up plans to launch tens of thousands of the satellites in the coming years.
Initially, SpaceX tried launching a so-called “darksat,” which was essentially a Starlink satellite with a dark coating, but the results from this approach were mixed. Next the company developed and tested a deployable sunshade that it calls “VisorSat.”
One VisorSat was launched earlier this month to test the new tech, and the next launch will carry the first batch to be fully shaded.
The mission will come on the heels of a June 30 Falcon 9 rocket launch, which lofted a new GPS satellite for the US military. That was followed by the first SpaceX landing after sending a military satellite to space.
Saturday’s launch is a rideshare, meaning that room has been made for a pair of Earth-observing satellites for the company BlackSky.
You can watch the launch via the livestream below, which typically starts about 15 minutes before liftoff.
Laser beams reflected between Earth and moon boost science – Phys.org
Dozens of times over the last decade NASA scientists have launched laser beams at a reflector the size of a paperback novel about 240,000 miles (385,000 kilometers) away from Earth. They announced today, in collaboration with their French colleagues, that the…
Dozens of times over the last decade NASA scientists have launched laser beams at a reflector the size of a paperback novel about 240,000 miles (385,000 kilometers) away from Earth. They announced today, in collaboration with their French colleagues, that they received signal back for the first time, an encouraging result that could enhance laser experiments used to study the physics of the universe.
The reflector NASA scientists aimed for is mounted on the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO), a…
Starlink: SpaceX’s 100th mission may break an incredible reusability record – Inverse
SpaceX’s upcoming launch could raise the bar for reusing rockets.
SpaceX may be about to take another step in its plan to reuse space rockets.
The company is expected to send up its 11th batch of Starlink satellites in mid-August, sending up 58 craft from Space Launch Complex 40 at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. The mission is also expected to send up three SkySat imagine satellites for Planet as part of a ride-sharing agreement, after the company previously hitched a ride in a Starlink mission in June. The extra satellites will be used to h…
NASA’s InSight Mars Lander Reveals What’s Inside the Red Planet – ExtremeTech
Using the seismometer on the lander, researchers from Rice University have peeled back the layers below the surface of the red planet like a giant, dusty onion.
Scientists believe Mars was much more similar to Earth in the distant past, not the dried-up ball of dust it is today. Understanding Mars could help us better understand how planets form, and the NASA InSight mission has the tools to get us there. Using the seismometer on the lander, researchers from Rice University have peeled back the layers below the surface of the red planet like a giant, dusty onion.
The seismometer attached to InSight works the same as similar instruments on Earth — the …
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