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SpaceX successfully launches 100th Starlink mission

SpaceX successfully launches 100th Starlink mission

SpaceX lit up the West Coast sky early Tuesday morning, Aug. 22, as it launched another batch of Starlink satellites to orbit.

A Falcon 9 carrying 21 Starlink satellites lifted off from Vandenberg Space Force Base in California at 2:37 a.m.

The rocket launch marks the Hawthorne company’s 100th dedicated Starlink mission and brought the total number of Starlink satellites it boosted to low-earth orbit to nearly 5,000. Starlink is a satellite internet constellation operated by the space exploration company that provides internet coverage on a global scale.

SpaceX launches a Starlink mission early Tuesday morning 2:37am across the west coast from Vandenberg Space Force Base. Simi Valley CA, Aug 22, 2023. Space-X launch was delayed a few days from Hurricane Hilary passing through.
Photo by Gene Blevins/Contributing Photographer)

SpaceX launches a Starlink mission early Tuesday morning 2:37am across the west coast from Vandenberg Space Force Base. Simi Valley CA, Aug 22, 2023. Space-X launch was delayed a few days from Hurricane Hilary passing through.
Photo by Gene Blevins/Contributing Photographer)

SpaceX launches a Starlink mission early Tuesday morning 2:37am across the west coast from Vandenberg Space Force Base. Simi Valley CA, Aug 22, 2023. Space-X launch was delayed a few days from Hurricane Hilary passing through.
Photo by Gene Blevins/Contributing Photographer)

SpaceX launches a Starlink mission early Tuesday morning 2:37am across the west coast from Vandenberg Space Force Base. Simi Valley CA, Aug 22, 2023. Space-X launch was delayed a few days from Hurricane Hilary passing through.
Photo by Gene Blevins/Contributing Photographer)

SpaceX launches a Starlink mission early Tuesday morning 2:37am across the west coast from Vandenberg Space Force Base. Simi Valley CA, Aug 22, 2023. Space-X launch was delayed a few days from Hurricane Hilary passing through.
Photo by Gene Blevins/Contributing Photographer)

SpaceX launches a Starlink mission early Tuesday morning 2:37am across the west coast from Vandenberg Space Force Base. Simi Valley CA, Aug 22, 2023. Space-X launch was delayed a few days from Hurricane Hilary passing through.
Photo by Gene Blevins/Contributing Photographer)

SpaceX launches a Starlink mission early Tuesday morning 2:37am across the west coast from Vandenberg Space Force Base. Simi Valley CA, Aug 22, 2023. Space-X launch was delayed a few days from Hurricane Hilary passing through.
Photo by Gene Blevins/Contributing Photographer)

SpaceX launches a Starlink mission early Tuesday morning 2:37am across the west coast from Vandenberg Space Force Base. Simi Valley CA, Aug 22, 2023. Space-X launch was delayed a few days from Hurricane Hilary passing through.
Photo by Gene Blevins/Contributing Photographer)

SpaceX launches a Starlink mission early Tuesday morning 2:37am across the west coast from Vandenberg Space Force Base. Simi Valley CA, Aug 22, 2023. Space-X launch was delayed a few days from Hurricane Hilary passing through.
Photo by Gene Blevins/Contributing Photographer)

SpaceX launches a Starlink mission early Tuesday morning 2:37am across the west coast from Vandenberg Space Force Base. Simi Valley CA, Aug 22, 2023. Space-X launch was delayed a few days from Hurricane Hilary passing through.
Photo by Gene Blevins/Contributing Photographer)

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The launch was initially scheduled to take place on Thursday, Aug 17, but was pushed back four days as a result of Hurricane Hilary, which became the first tropical storm to hit Southern California in 84 years.

“Due to Hurricane Hilary impacting recovery operations in the Pacific, we are standing down from tonight’s Falcon 9 launch of @Starlink. Next launch opportunity is no earlier than Monday, August 21,” the company announced on X (formerly Twitter) on Thursday.

This was the 15th flight for the Falcon 9 first stage booster supporting this mission. It successfully landed at SpaceX’s drone ship “Of Course I Still Love You” 8 1/2 minutes after takeoff, according to a video of the launch SpaceX posted on X.

SpaceX is targeting this Friday, Aug. 25, for its next astronaut mission. The flight will send four Crew-7 members to the International Space Mission abroad a SpaceX Crew Dragon Capsule. The rocket will be launched from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.