SpaceX launches second Starlink mission this week

The Starlink satellites are expected to release from the front end of the rocket all at once, instead of one-at-a-time or in pairs, as spacecraft often do when separating from a launch vehicle.

The Falcon 9 upper stage will fire thrusters to put itself in a spin before deploying the satellites Then the rocket will release retention rods that hold the satellites in place on top of the vehicle

before the craft individually activated their propulsion systems to begin climbing toward their final operating altitude roughly 335 miles (540 kilometers) above Earth.

The Falcon 9 rocket's upper stage is now in range of a ground station on the island of Diego Garcia in the Indian Ocean.

The Merlin engine has completed a brief burn to place the 50 Starlink spacecraft into a near-circular orbit around 196 miles (316 kilometers) high.

The Falcon 9 rocket is now flying in range of a ground station in Mauritius. Coming up on a brief reignition of the Falcon 9's upper stage Merlin engine in a few minutes.

T+plus 35 minutes. The Falcon 9's upper stage and its Starlink satellite payloads are now flying over the South Atlantic Ocean between Argentina and South Africa.

The second stage Merlin-vacuum engine placed the satellites in proper parking orbit, setting up another burn in less than 45 minutes to round off the orbit before payload separation.

SpaceX's first stage booster has landed on the drone ship "Off Course I Still Love You" off the coast of Baja California.

T+plus 6 minutes, 50 seconds. The first stage has begun its entry burn to target a landing on SpaceX's drone ship "Of Course I Still Love You."

Liftoff of SpaceX‚Äôs Falcon 9 rocket from California with the Starlink 4-11 mission, adding 50 more internet satellites to the privately-developed global internet network. 

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