JAKARTA – Elon Musk’s SpaceX broke its own record for the number of rockets launched in a calendar year on Friday, July 22. That number has surpassed 31 missions built last year, in the midst of a whirlwind campaign to launch its own Internet satellite into orbit.
SpaceX’s 32nd launch in 2022 aboard its mighty Falcon 9 rocket comes as companies race to build a slew of broadband satellites called Starlink, a consumer-powered service with hundreds of thousands of Internet users.
“Congratulations to the SpaceX team for a record number of launches!” SpaceX chief executive Musk tweeted after the mission, which sometime back deployed 46 Starlink satellites into low-Earth orbit.
Congratulations to the SpaceX team on the record number of launches! https://t.co/nb8ozrbqZ5
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) 22 July 2022
The mission took off from the company’s California launch site at Vandenberg Space Force Base. SpaceX has so far launched nearly 3,000 Starlink satellites into space. By far the largest number in the world by the private sector!
Friday’s mission, July 22, puts SpaceX on track to achieve its goal of making 52 orbital missions by the end of this year. It nearly doubled its annual launch cadence with the reusable Falcon 9, which SpaceX says can be flown up to 15 times.
The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying a payload of 53 Starlink satellites was launched at Launch Complex 39A. departed from
Most of these missions have been, and are to be, internal Starlink missions.
The company, founded by Musk in 2002 to facilitate interplanetary travel, has shifted its focus in recent months from building Falcon 9 rockets to managing an already built fleet, rapidly upgrading boosters under dead lines. Has invested heavily in infrastructure.
The company has applied the same strategy to its fleet of reusable Crew Dragons – a bubblegum-shaped spacecraft that launches on the Falcon 9 and transports humans into orbit and the International Space Station.
Falcon 9 launches 46 Starlink satellites into orbit pic.twitter.com/qysrekTXfo
— SpaceX (@SpaceX) 22 July 2022
SpaceX launches its Starlink satellite into space faster than its competitors in the race for satellite internet, such as satellite operator OneWeb, due to the rapid reusability of the Falcon 9 and the benefits associated with the use of internal rockets.
OneWeb, which is close to completing the Internet group with fewer satellites, has launched its satellite on a Russian Soyuz rocket. The company plans to use the Falcon 9 this year after Russia canceled the Soyuz contract due to its invasion of Ukraine.