SpaceX aims to complete a total of 60 missions in 2022, the most annual Falcon 9 rocket launches to date! The record-breaking launch manifest is double the amount of last year's missions. SpaceX launched 31 Falcon 9 missions in 2021. "SpaceX Falcon 9 team is making excellent progress – aiming for 60 launches this year!" said SpaceX founder Elon Musk in March.
SpaceX already broke its launch record; it completed the 39th mission of 2022 this week. To achieve all 60 planned missions, the company is performing rocket flights at an average rate of one per week. On Wednesday, August 31st, Musk revealed a more ambitious launch manifest for 2023. SpaceX aims to double the amount of annual rocket launches once more –"...Aiming for up to 100 flights next year," he shared.
Falcon 9 is the world’s most reliable and safe rocket, capable of launching payload to orbit, cargo and astronauts to the International Space Station. SpaceX can increase the pace of rocket launches because it is capable of reusing Falcon 9’s first-stage boosters. The fleet of previously-flown rockets enable the company to reduce the cost of spaceflight which results in more frequent launches. SpaceX has performed 177 missions, landed a total of 139 orbital-class rockets and reused Falcon 9 first-stage boosters in its recovered fleet 115 times – this accomplishment is unprecedented and historic in the aerospace industry. Engineers aim to reuse particular Falcon 9 boosters at least 10 times, multiple boosters have already surpassed that milestone. Earlier this year, a flight-proven Falcon 9 lifted off for the 12th time to deploy the heaviest payload of Starlink satellites at 16 tons. On August 27, SpaceX broke that record when a previously-flown Falcon 9 booster propelled 16.7 tons to orbit during another Starlink mission.
Most of SpaceX’s planned rocket flights for 2023 are expected to be internal missions dedicated to building the Starlink broadband satellite constellation. SpaceX plans to rapidly expand Starlink internet service coverage globally. Musk said that the Starlink team is making 'excellent progress', "...Expecting over 4,200 Starlink satellites in operation within 18 months, which is ~2/3 of all active satellites of Earth," he said. To date, SpaceX has launched 3,208 Starlink satellites of which 2,904 are operational, according to data by astronomer Jonathan McDowell. It will take multiple weeks for the most recently launched fleets of Starlink satellites to reach their operational altitude(s) in Low Earth Orbit.
Featured Image Source: SpaceX
About the Author
Evelyn Janeidy Arevalo
Evelyn J. Arevalo joined Tesmanian in 2019 to cover news as a Space Journalist and SpaceX Starbase Texas Correspondent. Evelyn is specialized in rocketry and space exploration. The main topics she covers are SpaceX and NASA.
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