Live updates from the Starlink Falcon 9 launch at the Cape

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Welcome to FLORIDA TODAY’s Space Team’s live coverage of the SpaceX Starlink 6-30 mission tonight from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.

SpaceX is targeting 11:20 PM EDT to launch a Falcon 9 rocket from Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.

Falcon 9 will deploy a constellation of 23 Starlink internet satellites, which are positioned inside the payload fascias atop the 230-foot rocket.

No local sonic booms are expected. After soaring toward the sky along a southeast trajectory, the rocket’s first stage booster will aim to land on a drone ship at sea 8 and a half minutes after liftoff.

When SpaceX’s live webcast hosted on X (formerly Twitter) becomes available approximately five minutes before liftoff, it will be posted at the top of this page.

Updated 10:46 PM EST: “All systems and weather are currently ready for launch,” SpaceX officials just said in a tweet announcing that Falcon 9 fueling procedures had begun at Launch Complex 40.

This means that tonight’s Starlink 6-30 mission is now locked in for liftoff at 11:20 PM EST, otherwise the launch must be postponed.

Once fully fueled, the Falcon 9 rocket will contain more than 1 million pounds of propellant, which the rocket can burn in less than three minutes after liftoff.

Updated at 10:33 PM EST: Tonight’s mission marks the 17th flight of a Falcon 9 first-stage rocket, SpaceX reports.

After stage separation, the booster is scheduled to land on the Read Instructions Only drone ship in the Atlantic Ocean 8 minutes and 27 seconds after liftoff.

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Updated 10:12 PM EST: According to the National Weather Service, the sky is partly cloudy with a high of 57 degrees at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.

Northwest winds blowing at 5 mph, visibility 10 miles.

Updated 9:52 a.m. EST: SpaceX officials did not publicly confirm tonight’s Starlink launch attempt on

In its launch forecast, the Space Force’s 45th Weather Squadron set a 90% chance of “launch to launch” weather early during tonight’s window, dropping to 80% as the evening descends and cold, dry air filters in from the northwest.

“(Sunday), models indicate that these upper-level clouds will likely increase in coverage and thickness as the window progresses. If the bases become low enough, this could be a concern for the base of thicker cloud layers,” the forecast said.

“However, since these clouds will be associated with the jet stream rather than thunderstorms, there is more leniency in the rule to allow a lower rule without causing a violation,” the forecast said.

For the latest schedule updates on the Cape, visit floridatoday.com/launchschedule.

Rick Neal is Florida Today’s space correspondent (for more of his stories, click here.) Call Neale at 321-242-3638 or [email protected]. Twitter/X: @Rick Neal1

Space is important to us, which is why we work to provide the highest coverage of industry and launch operations in Florida. Such journalism requires time and resources. Please support him by subscribing here.

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