A Falcon 9 rocket was set to haul 60 more Starlink broadband satellites into orbit Sunday night for SpaceX, but the countdown was aborted at T-minus 1 minute, 24 seconds. The next opportunity to launch the two-stage Falcon 9 from the Kennedy Space Center is at 7:53 p.m. EST Tuesday (0053 GMT Wednesday). The rocket’s reusable first stage — flying on its eighth mission — will target a landing downrange on SpaceX’s drone ship in the Atlantic Ocean.
An Indian Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle placed Brazil’s Amazonia 1 satellite into orbit Sunday to begin a mission monitoring deforestation in the Amazon rainforest, then released 18 smaller spacecraft at a lower altitude, marking a successful start to India’s 2021 launch schedule that could see as many as seven orbital-class rocket missions.
A senior SpaceX official said this week that “heat damage” led to the failure of a Falcon 9 booster during a landing attempt Feb. 15, but the company will press on with more launches and will likely surpass the 10-flight threshold on one of its reusable rockets soon. The next Falcon 9 launch, using a booster flying on its eighth mission, is scheduled for liftoff from Florida with 60 more Starlink internet satellites Sunday night.
An Antares launcher rocketed into orbit Saturday from the Eastern Shore of Virginia, deploying a Northrop Grumman Cygnus supply ship carrying nearly 8,400 pounds of cargo to the International Space Station, the the most massive collection of payloads ever flown to the research outpost on a U.S. commercial freighter.