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February 17th Starlink's 5th mission lifts off

Updated: Jun 28, 2020

10:05 am EST atop a Falcon 9 rocket, The 5th batch of Starlink satellites lifts off from LC-40

At two and a half minutes into flight, the Falcon 9 powered down the engines aboard the first stage and separated, a single Merlin engine on the second stage fired into orbit. Seconds later the payload's shroud was jettisoned as the rocket continued into space now showing the more than thirty four thousand pound package of satellites.

About 8 minutes after liftoff the first stage booster returned to land on the drone ship " Of Course I Still Love You" approximately 400 miles northeast of the launch site. This is where the mission took a turn. for the first time since 2016 a booster missed landing on the ship and reportedly had a soft water landing.

The booster was a veteran of the program, having three previous launches and landings.This would have been the 50th overall successful mission for SpaceX. Around the same time as the booster was landing at sea the launch controller announced that the upper stage had arrived in orbit and released the sixty Starlink satellites.

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