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Watch SpaceX launch 56 Starlink satellites, land rocket at sea today

Space logo Space 24/03/2023 Mike Wall
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SpaceX plans to launch another big batch of its Starlink internet satellites to orbit and land a rocket at sea today (March 24), and you can watch the action live.

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket topped with 56 Starlink spacecraft is scheduled to lift off at 11:33 a.m. EDT (1533 GMT) today from Florida's Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.

Watch it live here at, courtesy of SpaceX, or directly via the company. Coverage is expected to begin about five minutes before launch.

Related: SpaceX's Starlink satellite megaconstellation launches in photos

If all goes according to plan, the Falcon 9's first stage will come back to Earth about 8.5 minutes after liftoff, making a pinpoint touchdown off the Florida coast on the SpaceX droneship A Shortfall of Gravitas.

It will be the 10th launch and landing for this particular booster, SpaceX wrote in a mission description. Among its previous flights are the Crew-3 and Crew-4 astronaut missions to the International Space Station for NASA, which lifted off in November 2021 and April 2022, respectively.

The Falcon 9's upper stage, meanwhile, will continue carrying the 56 Starlink satellites to low Earth orbit (LEO), deploying them there about 65 minutes after launch.

SpaceX has already launched 4,105 Starlink satellites to LEO, more than 3,750 of which remain operational, according to astrophysicist and satellite tracker Jonathan McDowell

And those numbers will continue to grow: SpaceX has permission to deploy 12,000 Starlink craft in orbit and has applied for approval for another 30,000 on top of that.

Today's launch will be SpaceX's 20th of the year already. Company founder and CEO Elon Musk said last summer that SpaceX could launch as many as 100 orbital missions in 2023.

Mike Wall is the author of "Out There" (Grand Central Publishing, 2018; illustrated by Karl Tate), a book about the search for alien life. Follow him on Twitter @michaeldwall. Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom or on Facebook.  


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