SpaceX Transports 88 Satellites

Space Coast, FL – After a twenty-four hour delay, SpaceX got their Falcon 9 off the ground for Transporter 2. The fifty-eight minute window started at 1456 EDT. Updates provided by SpaceX pinpointed the launch time at 1531 EDT. The mission was a, full dedicated rideshare launch. It serviced eighty-eight unique satellites. This was the eighth flight for this Falcon 9 rocket booster. SpaceX now has launched twenty times so far in 2021.

Falcon 9 B1060-8 lifts off from SLC-40 for Transporter 2
Falcon 9 B1060-8 lifts off from SLC-40 for Transporter 2 | Photo: Jon Van Horne

Transporter 2

The Transporter 2 mission was the second of it's kind for SpaceX. Many different agencies sent up their satellites from detecting and geolocating radio frequency signals to space-based hyperspectral imaging. You may learn more about the satellites sent on our Transporter 2 details page. SpaceX will also host Transporter 3 slated for late 2021. This will be another multiple satellite launch and deployment, including the continuation of some satellites constellation.

Falcon 9 pushing it's way out of Earth's gravity
Falcon 9 pushing it's way out of Earth's gravity | Photo: Jon Van Horne

The overcast day did not hold back the launch. Although there were some scattered showers, lift off was imminent. The roar of the rocket was loud and long from the media press site at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station. Even after the rocket went through clouds all there was, was the sound of nine roaring Merlin engines. Soon after, silence.

A Falcon 9 fiery ball barely viewed through the layer of clouds above
A Falcon 9 fiery ball barely viewed through the layer of clouds above | Photo: Jon Van Horne

And then, through the clouds, the Falcon 9 first stage reappeared. The sure speed and free fall of the first stage is quite impressive to witness. Making it's way back to LZ-1 (LC-13) for the RTLS (Return To Launch Site) landing. A single Merlin engine re-ignited and slowed the descent. Just before touching down 3 sonic booms were heard pounding your chest like a rapid drum beat. The landing legs were deployed and the rocket making a perfect SpaceX textbook landing.

Next up and confirmed is ULA's Mighty Atlas V for Boeing's Starliner OFT-2 (Orbital Flight Test 2) mission. Stay up to date on launches on our launch schedule page.

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