SpaceX will launch four dozen Stellar Link internet satellites and land the return rocket on Wednesday, March 9, and you can watch the action live.
One step in two stages Falcon 9 The rocket topped with 48 Starlink spacecraft is scheduled to lift off from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida on Wednesday at 8:45 a.m. EST (1345 GMT). If all goes as planned, approximately nine minutes later the Falcon 9 first stage will descend for a vertical landing on the SpaceX A Shortfall of Gravitas drone, which will be stationed in the Atlantic Ocean a few hundred miles off the coast of Florida.
You can watch it all live here on Space.com, courtesy of SpaceX, or directly through the company. Coverage will begin approximately 15 minutes before takeoff.
Related: Launch of SpaceX’s Starlink satellite megaconstellation in photos
There is an 80% chance that the weather will be good enough to allow a launch on Wednesday, according to the 45th Weather Squadron at Patrick Space Force Base in Florida.
This will be the fourth launch and landing for this particular Falcon 9 first stage. The recall also kicked off the Arabsat-6A in April 2019, the Space Test Program-2 (STP-2) flight for the US military in June 2019, and the second-generation Italian COSMO-SkyMed FM2 Earth observation satellite in January 2022.
The first two missions on this list – Arabsat-6A and STP-2 – were piloted by the huge SpaceX Heavy Falcon rocket, which consists of three Falcon 9 cores strapped together, the center one surmounted by a second stage. COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation FM2 was piloted by a Falcon 9.
Starlink is the giant constellation of broadband satellites that SpaceX is assembling in low Earth orbit. The company has already launched over 2,000 Starlink ships so far, with many more to be launched in the relatively near future. SpaceX has permission to launch 12,000 Starlink satellites and has sought approval for up to 30,000 more.
Starlink provides Internet services in many parts of the world, including Ukraine. SpaceX worked for keep Starlink operational in Ukrainewhich suffered breakdowns following the Russian invasion which began on 24 February.
Wednesday’s launch will already be the 10th of 2022 for SpaceX. Six of the nine completed to date have launched large batches of Starlink satellites.
Mike Wall is the author of “The low(Grand Central Publishing, 2018; illustrated by Karl Tate), a book about the search for extraterrestrial life. Follow him on Twitter @michaeldwall. Follow us on twitter @Spacedotcom Or on Facebook.