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SpaceX launched 60 more Starlink satellites on reused first stage

Luxembourg, 7 October 2020. – SpaceX launched another 60 Starlink satellites from Florida, bringing the total of Starlink satellites launched so far to 775.

SpaceX launched the 60 new Starlink satellites from Launch Complex 39A at Kennedy Space Center in Florida on 6 October, the company said.

The first stage of the Falcon 9 rocket had been used previously for the Crew Dragon’s first flight to the International Space Station (ISS) with NASA astronauts onboard, SpaceX said. SpaceX landed the first stage again, on the “Of Course I Still Love You” droneship stationed in the Atlantic Ocean.

According to analysts and media reports, several dozens of the 775 Starlink satellites in space have already been deorbited or are defunct. Critics of SpaceX like Viasat therefore claim a significantly higher failure rate of Starlink satellites than SpaceX.

SpaceX counters these claims in legal filings and gives practical examples of Starlink’s functionality like during the wildfires in Washington State in August. “The way emergency responders deployed Starlink in this context is representative of how Starlink works best—in remote or rural areas where internet connectivity is unavailable,” SpaceX said.

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