SpaceX Falcon 9 Orbits Turksat 5B Satellite for Second Launch in One Day

Falcon 9 lifts off with Turksat 5B on Dec. 18, 2021. (Credit: SpaceX webcast)

CAPE CANAVERAL SPACE FORCE BASE, Fla. — On Saturday, December 18 at 10:58 p.m. EST, Falcon 9 launched the Turksat 5B mission to geostationary transfer orbit from Space Launch Complex 40 (SLC-40) at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida.

This was the third launch and landing of this booster, which previously supported launch of CRS-22 and Crew-3.

It was the second SpaceX launch on Saturday. At 7:41 a.m. EST, a Falcon 9 launched 52 Starlink broadband satellites to low-Earth orbit from Space Launch Complex 4 East (SLC-4E) at Vandenberg Space Force Base in California.

It was the 11th launch and landing of a Falcon 9 first-stage booster, a new record for the company. The booster has launched Dragon’s first crew demonstration mission, the RADARSAT Constellation Mission, SXM-7, and now 8 Starlink missions.

SpaceX is scheduled to conduct its 31st and final launch of the year on Tuesday, Dec. 21 at 5:06 a.m. EST. A Falcon 9 will launch a Dragon 2 cargo ship to the International Space Station (ISS) from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center. It will be the 24th mission under SpaceX’s Commercial Resupply Services contract and the Dragon capsule’s fourth flight to the station.

The forecast calls for a 40 percent chance of favorable weather for the launch.