SpaceX has launched its second batch of 60 internet satellites called Starlink into space which aims to meet the internet needs of consumers across the globe. The first batch of 60 Starlink satellites was launched in May.
The latest batch was launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida, which makes it the fourth mission for this SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket booster.
“The Falcon has landed for the fourth time,” SpaceX Starlink engineer Lauren Lyons, said during launch commentary. “These boosters are designed to be used 10 times. Let’s turn it around for a fifth, guys.”
Starlink aims to provide affordable, fast and reliable internet to people with little or no connectivity, including those in rural communities and places where existing services are too expensive or unreliable.
Starlink represents SpaceX’s plan to create an interconnected network of as many as 30,000 satellites, to beam high-speed internet to consumers anywhere in the world.
SpaceX estimates it needs at least six more Starlink launches to start offering internet access at high latitudes, such as Canada and the Northern US.
SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell said in September that the company might launch a total of five Starlink missions this year.
After 24 launches, SpaceX hopes to provide global internet coverage by 2020.
“We deployed 60 more Starlink satellites. This puts us one step closer to being able to offer Starlink internet service to customers across the globe, including people in rural and hard to reach places who have struggled to access high speed internet,” SpaceX engineer Lauren Lyons said on the webcast.
After the launch took place successfully, the rocket’s first stage touched down on a SpaceX’s drone ship landing platform Of Course I Still Love You in the Atlantic Ocean.