Launching at 1129 GMT on 6 October from Cape Canaveral, USA, a SpaceX mission carrying the 12th operational batch of 60 Starlink satellites reached LEO. The mission utilised the company’s Falcon 9 launch vehicle, and made use of a first-stage for the third time. This mission made its first attempt to launch on 17 September, which was eventually cancelled due to rough weather in the Atlantic Ocean compromising any first-stage landing attempt. Since then the mission was beset by issues relating to range availability, ground equipment and finally launch site-related weather.

Just after one hour following lift-off the Starlink satellites successfully separated from the upper-stage. This marks the completion of the mission.

The Falcon 9 rocket after leaving the launch pad in Florida. Courtesy of SpaceX via YouTube.


In what has fast become a common occurrence for a SpaceX launch. The first-stage of the Falcon 9 completed its re-entry and landed on the drone-ship Of Course I Still Love You located downrange eight minutes after lift-off. In other re-usability news, one of the fairing halves was also a reused item. This having completed two previous launches (Starlink demonstration launch, and the fifth operational Starlink mission).