Heavy American carrier rocket Falcon 9 on Friday successfully launched into orbit 60 mini-satellites, designed to begin creating a global Internet-coating system Starlink, said the developer SpaceX.
“The successful conclusion of satellites confirmed”, – have informed in the company.
The launch of the two-stage Falcon 9 rocket was carried out at 05:30 CEST with the 40th launch complex at the NASA spaceport at Cape Canaveral in Florida.
After approx. one hour and two minutes after launch at an altitude of 440 km the satellite system Starlink was separated from the rocket. Then use its own propulsion system to run at its target orbit with altitude of 550 km.
The total mass put into orbit by carrier rocket Falcon 9 SpaceX, which became the largest for its missiles, amounted to 18.5 tons.
Meanwhile, the reusable first stage rocket Falcon 9 made a successful controlled landing on a floating platform automated Of Course I Still Love You off the coast of Florida after eight and a half minutes after launch.
60 satellites Starlink are the first of what is planned about 12 thousand spacecraft of this type to create a full network which will provide the inhabitants of the Earth broadband access to the Internet in any corner of the planet. It is assumed that they will all be launched into orbit after 2020. The total investment for the project is estimated at $10 billion.
As previously reported by the owner of the company SpaceX Elon Musk, to provide the minimum coverage required, at least six similar launches with 60 satellites, which is planned before the end of the year, that is, to launch 360 units, and for the average of 12 runs, which will allow to create a group of devices 720.
SpaceX is one of a number of companies that seek to place in orbit larger satellites constellation to provide global Internet coverage. Among them – OneWeb, Telesat, LeoSat and Amazon. As reported, the company OneWeb in February this year also launched into orbit the first six satellites of its own system.