SpaceX launched 22 additional Starlink internet satellites from California early Monday morning (November 20).
A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifted off from Vandenberg Space Force Base on Monday at 5:30 a.m. EDT (1030 GMT; 2:30 a.m. local time in California).
Related: Starlink Space Train: How to See and Track It in the Night Sky
The Falcon 9 rocket’s first stage returned to Earth for a vertical landing about 8.5 minutes after launch aboard the Of Course I Still Love You drone ship, which was stationed in the Pacific Ocean.
This was the 15th launch and landing of this rocket’s first stage, according to SpaceX Task description. That flight included nine other Starlink launches as well as the Double Asteroid Redirection Test, a NASA mission that successfully collided with a spacecraft in September 2022.
Meanwhile, the 22 Starlink satellites were deployed from the Falcon 9 rocket’s upper stage into low Earth orbit about 62.5 minutes after liftoff.
Monday morning’s launch capped off a very busy weekend for SpaceX. The company also launched 23 Starlink satellites from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida on Friday night (November 17).
On Saturday, SpaceX launched the second-ever test flight of Starship, the giant next-generation system it is developing to help humanity set up shop on the Moon and Mars. The spacecraft initially flew well, reaching a maximum altitude of about 91 miles (148 kilometers), but the mission ended about eight minutes after liftoff with an “unscheduled rapid disassembly” — SpaceX lingo for an explosion.
The launch was originally scheduled to take place on Monday morning, but the company canceled the attempt after fuel loading began.
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