Here’s what to know before taking off from Cape Town

Here’s what to know before taking off from Cape Town

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It’s launch day again!

After backing out of the first attempt Thursday night, SpaceX teams at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station are now on track to launch a Falcon 9 rocket carrying 22 Starlink internet satellites on Friday night from Launch Complex 40.

The Starlink 6-16 mission is scheduled to launch at 11:38 PM EDT on Friday, September 15.

Check back for updates on Space Team’s live launch coverage which will be posted on this page starting 90 minutes before the window opens. When a SpaceX live stream hosted on X (formerly Twitter) becomes available approximately 5 minutes before liftoff, it will be made available at the top of this page.

The 230-foot Falcon 9 rocket is tentatively scheduled to launch at 11:38 p.m. EST on Friday. The Falcon 9’s payload interface contains 22 Starlink Internet satellites.

If necessary, an additional launch opportunity is available at 12:07 AM EST. Saturday. Additionally, two backup opportunities are available later Saturday, at 11:13 PM and 11:38 PM EST.

After a short flight along the southeast trajectory, about eight minutes after liftoff, the Falcon 9 first-stage rocket is scheduled to target a drone ship landing at sea.

Meteorologists with the Space Force’s 45th Weather Squadron reported a 45% chance of “kick-off” conditions around the spaceport during the Friday night launch window. Recovery conditions for the drone ship landing are listed as “low to moderate risk.”

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If schedules hold, this will be the 49th Space Coast launch this year.

A weather report released Wednesday by the Space Force’s 45th Weather Squadron pegs conditions at 45% at launch. Recovery conditions for the offshore drone booster landing are listed as “low to moderate risk” as the front advances south into central Florida, bringing deeper moisture to the peninsula.

“Rain and storm coverage will be higher for the backup launch window Friday evening. Cumulus and anvil cloud bases will remain the primary concerns for the launch,” the weather squadron’s forecast said.

As SpaceX teams prepare for another launch from the Cape, Hurricane Lee continues to generate large waves off the coast of Florida, which could pose a problem for a drone ship waiting for a boosted landing attempt off the coast of the Bahamas.

Here’s everything you need to know:

  • It will host the Cape Canaveral Space Station’s Launch Complex 40.
  • The payload is the company’s next batch of Internet-broadcasting Starlink satellites.
  • The 230-foot Falcon 9 rocket will follow a southeast trajectory between Florida and the Bahamas.

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  • If it launches on time, it will mark the 49th Space Coast launch this year.
  • There are no local sound spikes with this task.
  • The 130-foot-long first-stage booster will target a landing drone ship about eight minutes after liftoff.
  • This will be the fifth flight of this first-stage booster.

When will the next launch be from the Florida Space Coast?

More SpaceX Starlink missions are expected to launch from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station next week, but the company has not yet announced a target date for the next mission. For the latest schedule updates, visit

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Rick Neale is FLORIDA TODAY’s South Brevard Watchdog reporter (for more of his stories, click here.) Call Neale at 321-242-3638 or [email protected]. Twitter/X: @Rick Neal1

Contact Jimmy Groh at [email protected] And follow it X at AlteredJamie.

Space is important to us, which is why we work to provide the highest coverage of industry and launch operations in Florida. Such journalism requires time and resources. Please support him by subscribing here.

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