KEY POINTS

  • SpaceX will launch new Starlink satellites this week
  • Falcon 9 underwent a static fire test for the launch
  • SpaceX plans to deploy 42,000 Starlink satellites

SpaceX has confirmed that it will proceed with the launch of the latest batch of Starlink satellites later this week. The company made the confirmation after carrying out a pre-launch test with its Falcon 9 rocket.

Just a day after successfully conducting an abort test for its Crew Dragon spacecraft, SpaceX once again fired up its flagship rocket in preparation for another launch procedure this week. Dubbed as the static fire test, the company ignited the engines of the Falcon 9’s first stage to make sure that it’s in perfect working condition, Space.com reported.

SpaceX conducted the static test in preparation for the launch of 60 additional Starlink satellites. Initially, the company wanted to launch the new batch of satellites on Tuesday but due to unfavorable weather conditions, SpaceX decided to postpone it.

Recently, the company confirmed by Twitter that it will proceed with the launch on Friday.

“Now targeting January 24 at 10:54 a.m. EST, 15:54 UTC, for launch of 60 Starlink satellites; team is continuing to monitor weather in the recovery area,” SpaceX stated.

The upcoming launch would most likely take place at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. If it pushes through, it will serve as the third launch in the facility this year.

Friday’s possible launch is part of SpaceX’s ongoing effort in deploying a mega constellation of satellites in low-Earth orbit as part of its Starlink project. The company officially started the project with the launch of two test satellites on Feb. 22, 2019. Then, in May of last year, SpaceX deployed the second batch of satellites with the launch of 60 Starlink units.

Since then, the company has been launching a number of satellites into space. The latest batch was launched earlier this month. Initially, the company said it plans to deploy a total of 12,000 satellites, which would provide high-speed Internet connection to different parts of the world.

However, according to documents filed by the company last year, it was revealed that the company is now planning to launch an additional 30,000 satellites for the project, bringing the total to 42,000.

A SpaceX Starlink satellite
A SpaceX Starlink satellite in orbit (illustration) SpaceX
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