Tech News: SpaceX’s ‘rideshare’ mission to launch record breaking satellites on a single mission.
The SpaceX Transporter-1 mission launched today will put 133 commercial and government spacecraft and 10 more Starlink satellites into orbit. SpaceX says it is “the most spacecraft ever launched on a single mission” – the previous record holder, an Indian Polar satellite launch vehicle, has brought just 104 satellites into space. In addition to a record payload, Transporter-1 is also the first dedicated launch under the SmallSat Rideshare program that SpaceX announced in 2019.
Tomorrow launch of many small satellites for a wide range of customers Excited To Offer Low Cost Orbit Access For Small Businesses! https://t.co/NrXmBML747
– Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 22, 2021
The SmallSat program offers businesses and government agencies a cost-effective way to get their CubeSats, microsats, and other small spacecraft into orbit. Pricing starts at $ 2.5 million for payloads up to 150kg (330lb). Clients of the program usually ask for a ride on other Falcon 9 launches, and this is the first time they will be the focus of a mission. As for the Starlink satellites aboard the flight, they will be the first in the constellation to be placed in polar orbit.
Over it TwitterSpaceX chief Elon Musk said Transporter-1 is “observed even more closely than a Starlink flight” because so many companies depend on it to get off to a smooth start.
SpaceX will open the Transporter-1 launch window later today, January 23, at 9:40 AM. The mission will take off from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida, and the company will stream the event starting approximately 15 minutes before launch. You can watch the launch live in the video below: