On Tuesday, January 18, SpaceX launched 40 more Starlink satellites into space from Nasa’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. According to Metro, this brings the total to more than 2,000 satellites in orbit for SpaceX.
“1,469 Starlink satellites active. 272 moving to operational orbits. Laser links activate soon,” SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk wrote on Twitter on Saturday.
This mission was the third this year and the 36th in Starlink history. The SpaceX Falcon 9 launched the satellites roughly 15 minutes after reaching orbit and successfully landed on the SpaceX drone ship stationed in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Florida. The Metro reported that this was the tenth landing for Falcon 9, having completed other Starlink missions, plus launching satellites for the U.S. military and Turkey.
The company has regulatory approval to launch more than 12,000 Starlinks to provide space-based commercial internet access to customers around the globe, reported the Metro. SpaceX also plans to launch an additional 30,000 satellites, according to paperwork filed with the International Telecommunication Union.