SpaceX rocket deploys record-setting cargo

Rodiano Bonacci
Gennaio 25, 2021

Known as Transporter-1, the mission is SpaceX's first dedicated launch under its internal Smallsat Rideshare Program and represents the start of a planned series of regular, semiannual launch opportunities for small satellites. With these satellites, SpaceX aims to provide near-global broadband internet coverage all over the world by 2021.

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket has successfully delivered 143 spacecraft to orbit, snagging a world record for most satellites launched in one go that's likely to remain unchallenged indefinitely.

As the payload ascended towards orbit, the first stage was separated and flipped for its descent back to Earth, using its engines to slow down its descent before making a soft landing on the company's Of Course I Still Love You droneship in the Atlantic Ocean.

Andy Tran, a SpaceX production supervisor, said in a video of the launch that the Falcon 9 was carrying 133 commercial and government "spacecraft" as well 10 SpaceX satellites.

Previous launches with multiple spacecraft deployed on the same mission include the 104 satellites launched by the PSLV-C37 during India's PSLV program in 2017, and Russia's Dnepr rocket which deployed 37 in 2014.

According to Ars Technica, the weather "violated the electrical field rule for a safe launch".

On January 22, Mr Musk, also chief executive of Tesla Inc., tweeted: "Launching many small satellites for a wide range of customers tomorrow".

Almost a fortnight after Elon Musk's Tesla entered India on January 8, his SpaceX on Sunday night broke a world space record by launching 143 satellites in quick succession, beating India's record of deploying 104 satellites in February 2017. "Excited about offering low-priced access to orbit for small companies!"

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