Hawthorne-based Space Exploration Technologies Corp. will reportedly resume launching Starlink internet satellites into orbit in August after a monthlong hiatus.
The company has scheduled two Falcon 9 missions, with the first set to launch no earlier than Aug. 10 from Vandenberg Space Force Base near Lompoc. Despite the hiatus, SpaceX is on track to surpass a record-breaking 2020 when it completed 26 launches. So far in 2021, it has completed 20. But its launchpads have been quiet since June 30 when SpaceX last launched three Starlink satellites and 85 commercial and government satellites from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida. The last Falcon 9 mission to carry a full load of satellites was May 26.
With Starlink, SpaceX founder Elon Musk wants to create a company-owned broadband network available to subscribers around the world.
Last month at the Mobile World Congress 2021, Musk said Starlink, which is in beta testing in 11 countries, would be available globally in August.Most of this year's SpaceX launches have been for Starlink. The program has launched a total of 1,740 satellites since its first mission in May 2019 although some are prototypes that have since been retired.
SpaceX has approval from the Federal Communications Commission to launch up to 12,000 internet satellites for Starlink.
For reprint and licensing requests for this article, CLICK HERE.