SpaceX completes 40th Falcon 9 launch of 2022

spacex falcon 9
Credit: SpaceX

SpaceX has had a busy 2022 as a company. It has successfully executed its 40th Falcon 9 launch of the year. The most recent launch put a new batch of Starlink satellites and a Boeing satellite in orbit.

The launch rocket fired off from the LC-40 pad at the Cape Canaveral Space Force Station at 10:09 am. SpaceX reused a booster and fairing but a new upper stage.

The Sunday launch is SpaceX’s 149th successful Falcon 9 launch consecutively. It used the Falcon Heavy booster B1052 flying for the 7th time. It was just 31 days after its last flight. SpaceX had a Falcon 9 crash, but it was not a flight.

The flight ended with Booster B1052 landing on the Just Read The Instruction (JRTI) drone ship. The landing occurred about nine minutes after liftoff.

SpaceX used fairing halves that were flying for the 4th and 5th times. They will be located and recovered by support ship Doug for reuse.

The latest launch was shared by SpaceX with Boeing; the sixth shared by Starlink satellites. Boeing launched an experimental satellite to verify a new V-band communication technology. Exactly what Boeing plans to achieve with the satellite and how it will do so remains unknown.

Onboard were 51 V1.5 Starlink satellites, which were released all at once.

SpaceX is expected to launch two more batches of Starlink satellites in the next eight days. The company has won the launch contract for NASA’s Roman Space Telescope using a Falcon Heavy. The space agency’s Europa Clipper will also be flown on a Falcon Heavy.