Tuesday, August 4, 2020

SpaceX postpones Starlink launch to tomorrow due to “strong upper-level winds”

Elon Musk’s SpaceX is postponing today’s launch of 60 internet communication satellites today aboard its reusable Falcon 9 rocket. Liftoff of the Falcon 9 was expected around 9:49 AM EST (14:49 GMT) from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. The next launch window opens up tomorrow, (January 28) at 9:28 AM EST (14:28 GMT) at an 80% chance of good weather, according to the 45th Weather Squadron of the U.S. Air Force.

This launch was initially scheduled days earlier, right after the in-flight launch abort test of the Crew Dragon, but was continuously delayed due to weather conditions.

The launch webcast is expected to begin around 15 minutes before liftoff. You can watch the live telecast right here, courtesy of SpaceX, or watch it directly on the SpaceX website.

Watch Live from SpaceX tomorrow

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What is Starlink?

Starlink is SpaceX’s mega constellation internet communication satellite network that aims to provide internet access to all corners of the globe using thousands of small satellites. SpaceX has successfully launched over 180 satellites into space and plans to launch over 42,000 ‘Starlink’ satellites over the next decade to attain such network coverage.

However, there has been lots of backlash from the astronomy community regarding low visibility of telescopes (due to glare from thousands of satellites), space littering, and more. The debate even started a discussion at the 70th International Astronautical Conference regarding space laws. The long debate led to experts suggesting the need for new space treaties.

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