Launch Spotlight: SpaceX set to launch third Transporter mission

Thursday morning SpaceX is preparing to launch another Transporter rideshare mission. This will take off from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida. This mission will feature a booster landing at Landing Zone 1, also located at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.

Launch Date: Thursday, January 13, 10:25 a.m. EST

Rocket: SpaceX’s Falcon 9 (1058-10)

Payload: Multiple rideshare satellites

Launch Pad: SLC-40, Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, Florida

Destination: Sun-Synchronous Orbit

Landing Site: Landing Zone 1, Cape Canaveral Space Force Station

What is the Falcon 9?

SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket is the workhorse of commercial launches into Earth orbit. Nine Merlin engines power the partially reusable rocket on the first stage and a single vacuum optimized Merlin on the second stage. The Falcon 9 has launched a total of 135 times with a 98% success rate, making it a highly trusted vehicle among the commercial, scientific, and defense sectors.

The Booster

The booster for this mission will be 1058-10. This will be the third booster to reach the 10 flight milestone. It is the only Falcon 9 booster to feature any NASA branding and the booster that launch the first crewed SpaceX mission. These are the missions 1058 has supported:

  • Crew Demo-2
  • ANASIS-II
  • Starlink Mission 13
  • CRS-21
  • Transporter-1
  • Starlink Mission 21
  • Starlink Mission 24
  • Starlink Mission 27
  • Starlink Group 4-1

Weather

The latest weather forecast from Space Launch Delta 45 shows a 70% chance for acceptable launch conditions with the primary concern being cumulus clouds and thick clouds. In the event of a 24-hour delay, the chance of acceptable conditions will be 90% with the primary concerns being cumulus clouds. Both days feature low risks for upper-level winds, booster recovery weather, and solar activity. (Updated: Jan. 11, 12 p.m. EST)

Where to watch?

You can find coverage of Friday’s Starlink launch on SpaceX’s YouTube channel. The live stream will usually go live about 15 minutes before liftoff and will offer the best views of the launch. We will embed the stream here once it becomes scheduled.

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