SpaceX is launching Starlink satellites today and you can watch live for free

SpaceX is set to launch its latest batch of satellites today (Dec. 28) from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, and you can catch the live stream at no cost.

Carried by a Falcon 9 rocket, the 23 Starlink broadband proving spacecraft will be deployed into low Earth orbit. The launch window is scheduled to open at 11:01 p.m. EST on Thursday (0401 GMT on Friday, Dec. 29). Courtesy of SpaceX, you can watch the launch here on Space.com, with the live stream starting a few minutes before liftoff.

However, that’s not the only exciting event happening today. SpaceX is also planning another launch in the same evening, where a Falcon Heavy rocket will carry the secretive X-37B spaceplane.

The X-37B launch is targeted for 8:07 p.m. EST (0107 GMT on Friday, Dec. 29) and is expected to be broadcasted live as well.

Related: SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket set to launch secretive X-37B spaceplane today

If everything goes according to plan, the X-37B mission will mark SpaceX’s 97th launch in 2023, while the Starlink satellite launch (known as 6-36) will become the company’s 98th launch this year.

In 2023, SpaceX aims to reach a total of 98 launches, including 91 Falcon 9 missions, 5 Falcon Heavy launches, and 2 Starship launch system lift-offs. The company achieved 61 launches in 2022, consisting of 60 Falcon 9 rockets and 1 Falcon Heavy launch. In 2021 and 2020, SpaceX successfully completed 31 and 26 launches, respectively, all of which were Falcon 9 rockets.

Although SpaceX won’t reach the milestone of 100 launches in 2023, the company has one more blast-off planned for Saturday (Dec. 30). This final launch will carry an additional 21 Starlink spacecraft into low Earth orbit, taking off from Vandenberg Space Force Base in California.

According to SpaceX, the first-stage booster for the Dec. 28 Starlink launch will be flying for the 12th time, showcasing its reusability. Previously, it has successfully delivered cargo such as CRS-24, Eutelsat HOTBIRD 13F, OneWeb 1, SES-18, and SES-19 to space, in addition to seven previous Starlink missions.

As of November 2023, SpaceX’s Starlink mega constellation comprises over 5,200 operational broadband internet-providing small satellites in low-Earth orbit. The company plans to deploy up to 12,000 satellites for Starlink, and it hopes to expand this number to 42,000 with proper authorization.



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