SpaceX launches its first batch of Starlink satellites aimed at new coverage areas from California – TechCrunch

SpaceX launched a Falcon 9 rocket carrying 51 of its Starlink satellites from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California on Monday night at 8:55 PM PDT (11:55 PM EDT). This was the first launch for the Starlink satellite internet constellation from the west coast, and also the first batch of a second stage of Starlink satellite deployment, targeting a new orbital trajectory that will help the network provide service to new regions including Northern Canada and parts of Northern Europe.

The launch used a reflown Falcon 9 that had previously supported nine other missions, including seven prior Starlink flights. In total, SpaceX has now launched around 1,800 Starlink satellites, and it has been providing coverage to customers during its beta program for over a year now. The company said in August that it has now shipped around 100,000 terminals to customers, with over 90,000 active users on the service at the moment and a full order volume of around 500,000 kits in total.

SpaceX plans to expand the constellation considerably in order to continue to grow the footprint of where Starlink service is available globally. It ultimately aims to build out the constellation to where it consists of nearly 30,000 satellites, which should provide reliable worldwide broadband coverage for customers.

You can watch a full recap of Monday night’s launch below.

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