77 Launches Conducted During First Half of 2022 as Access to Orbit Expanded

Falcon 9 launches 53 Starlink satellites while the Dragon that will carry Crew-4 to the International space Station awaits its turn. (Credit: SpaceX)

by Douglas Messier
Managing Editor

It was a busy first half of 2022 that saw 77 orbital launches with 74 successes and three failures through the 182nd day of the year on July 1. At a rate of one launch every 2 days 8 hours 44 minutes, the world is on track to exceed the 146 launches conducted in 2021.

A number of significant missions were launched during a period that saw more than 1,000 satellite launched. SpaceX flew the first fully commercial crewed mission to the International Space Station (ISS), Boeing conducted an orbital flight test of its CST-100 Starliner spacecraft, China prepared to complete assembly of its space station, South Korea launched its first domestically manufactured rocket, and Rocket Lab sent a NASA mission to the moon.

Let’s take a closer look at the numbers.

Orbital Launches by Nation

Electron launches on May 3, 2022. (Credit: Rocket Lab)

Orbital Launches by Nation
January – July 1, 2022

The United States and China were number one and two as they have for the past several years. Russia was a distant third, South Korea had a major breakthrough, Europe didn’t get on the board until late June, and Japan launched not at all.

NationSuccessesFailuresTotalPercentage of Total LaunchesNotes
United States3924153.25Includes Rocket Lab Electron launches from New Zealand
China2112228.57Includes crew and cargo launches to the Tiangong space station
Russia90911.69Includes 1 Soyuz ST-B launch from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana conducted by Arianespace
India2022.60Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV)
Europe1011.30Ariane 5
Iran1011.30Qased launch vehicle
South Korea1011.30First successful launch of domestically produced orbital launch vehicle (Nuri)
Total74377100

The United States launched 41 times with 39 successes and two failures for a success rate of 95.1 percent. That figure is 10 short of the 51 launches conducted in 2021, which saw 48 successes and three failures.

China launched 22 times with a single failure for a 95.5 percent success rate. China launched 56 times with 53 successes and three failures in 2021.

The combined 63 attempts by the United States and China accounted for 81.8 percent of all global launch attempts during the first half of 2022. The two nations also accounted for all three failures.

Russia was in third place with nine launches. The Russian total would have been higher if not for Western sanctions over the invasion of Ukraine, which resulted in the cancellation of multiple launches planned throughout the year.

India launched its Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) twice. Europe’s launch output lagged with only one launch in the first six months as it transitions from the Ariane 5 and Vega boosters to the new Ariane 6 and Vega-C launchers. South Korea launched Nuri (KSLV-II) — the nation’s first fully domestically produced orbital launch vehicle. Iran conducted one launch.

Japan, which typically launches two to four times per year, has yet to send anything into orbit. The Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) has been experiencing delays with its new H3 rocket as it phases out use of the H-IIA booster.

Let’s take a closer look at launches by nation.

U.S. Launches

LauncherOne ignites on its way to space. (Credit: Virgin Orbit)

SpaceX dominated with 27 Falcon 9 launches, which amounted to 65.9 percent of total American launches. Five other companies launched 14 times with 12 successes and two failures.

U.S. Launches
January – July 1, 2022

Launch VehicleCompanySuccessesFailuresTotalHighlight(s)
Falcon 9SpaceX27027Two Crew Dragons launched to ISS, 15 dedicated Starlink launches, 3 Transporter rideshare missions
Atlas VUnited Launch Alliance (ULA)404Boeing CST-100 Starliner Orbital Test Flight No. 2
ElectronRocket Lab404All launches from Mahia Peninsula in New Zealand; company’s first deep-space mission (CAPSTONE)
Rocket 3.3Astra Space123First successful launch with commercial payloads aboard
LauncherOneVirgin Orbit202First night launch
AntaresNorthrop Grumman101Cygnus NG-17 resupply mission to ISS
Total:39241

SpaceX launched nearly 1,000 payloads into orbit. Fifteen Falcon 9 launches placed 762 Starlink broadband satellites into orbit. Three Transporter rideshare missions launched an additional 204 payloads. Elon Musk’s company also launched the Crew-4 mission for NASA and the Axiom Space’s privately-funded Ax-1 crewed flight to the space station. Falcon 9 rockets also orbited commercial communications satellites and military payloads.

United Launch Alliance (ULA) launched the Atlas V four times. The highlight of the company’s campaign was the launch of Boeing’s CST-100 Starliner crew vehicle, which performed a successful six-day uncrewed flight test to the International Space Station in May. ULA’s other three launches carried defense payloads.

CAPSTONE approaches Near-Rectilinear Halo Orbit (Image Credit: Terran Orbital Corporation)

Rocket Lab launched its Electron rocket four times from New Zealand. In June, the company launched its first deep-space mission by sending NASA’s Cislunar Autonomous Positioning System Technology Operations and Navigation Experiment (CAPSTONE) satellite to the moon. CAPSTONE will evaluate the near rectilinear halo orbit that will be used by the human-tended lunar Gateway station.

Rocket Lab attempted to capture an Electron first stage using a helicopter for later reuse. The attempt briefly succeeded, but the pilots released the booster for safely reasons. The stage was recovered from the Pacific Ocean.

Publicly traded Astra Space suffered two failures of its Rocket 3.3 booster in three launch attempts. The company’s overall record is two successes, five failures and one launcher destroyed on the pad during pre-flight preparations.

Virgin Orbit flew its LauncherOne booster twice, including the first night launch on July 1. Northrop Grumman’s Antares rocket sent the Cygnus NG-17 resupply ship to ISS.

International Space Station Flights

The 11-person crew aboard the station comprises of (clockwise from bottom right) Expedition 67 Commander Tom Marshburn with Flight Engineers Oleg Artemyev, Denis Matveev, Sergey Korsakov, Raja Chari, Kayla Barron, and Matthias Maurer; and Axiom Mission 1 astronauts (center row from left) Mark Pathy, Eytan Stibbe, Larry Connor, and Michael Lopez-Alegria. (Credits: NASA)

U.S. visits to the space station included two crewed SpaceX Dragon missions, an uncrewed Boeing CST-100 Starliner flight test, and a Northrop Grumman Cygnus resupply mission. Starliner, two Crew Dragons and a cargo Dragon departed ISS and returned to Earth.

U.S. International Space Station Launches & Return Flights
January – July 1 2022

DateLaunch VehicleSpacecraftPurposeCrew
Jan. 24, 2022Falcon 9Cargo Dragon 2Capsule return (launched Dec. 21, 2021)None
Feb. 19, 2022AntaresCygnus NG-17ISS resupplyNone
April 8, 2022Falcon 9Crew DragonAxiom Mission-1 LaunchMichael Lopez Alegria, Larry Connor, Mark Pathy, Eytan Stibbe
April 25, 2022Falcon 9Crew DragonAxiom Mission-1 ReturnMichael Lopez Alegria, Larry Connor, Mark Pathy, Eytan Stibbe
April 27, 2022Falcon 9Crew DragonISS Crew-4 launchKjell Lindgren, Robert Hines, Jessica Watkins, Samantha Christoferetti
May 6, 2022Falcon 9Crew DragonISS Crew-3 return (launched Nov 11, 2021)Raja Chari, Thomas Marshburn, Matthias Mauer, Kayla Barron
May 19, 2022Atlas VCST-100 StarlinerUncrewed flight testNone
May 25, 2022Atlas VCST-100 StarlinerCapsule returnNone
June 29, 2022AntaresCygnus NG-17Resupply ship departureNone

The first fully private crewed flight to the space station was launched aboard a SpaceX Crew Dragon on April 8. Former NASA astronaut Michael Lopez-Alegria commanded Axiom Space’s Ax-1 mission with three paying customers: American Larry Connor, Canadian Mark Pathy and Israeli Eytan Stibbe. The three men reportedly paid $55 million apiece for their flights.

The Ax-1 crew raised ISS occupancy to 11 as they joined America astronauts Raja Chari, Thomas Marshburn and Kayla Barron; Russian cosmonauts Oleg Artemyev, Denis Matveev and Sergey Korsakov; and European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut Matthias Mauer. The Ax-1 astronauts conducted a series of experiments during their 17-day mission, which ended on April 25.

NASA astronauts and Crew-4 crewmembers Jessica Watkins, Bob Hines and Kjell Lindgren stand alongside ESA astronaut and Crew-4 crewmember Samantha Cristoforetti. (Credit: SpaceX)

SpaceX launched the Crew-4 mission two days after the Ax-1 Crew Dragon vehicle splashed down of the coast of Florida. NASA astronauts Kjell Lindgren, Robert Hines, Jessica Watkins and ESA astronaut Samantha Christoferetti arrived safely at the station for a six-month mission. Crew-3 astronauts Chari, Marshburn, Barron and Mauer returned to Earth on May 6.

An Atlas V launched Boeing’s CST-100 Starliner spacecraft on its second orbital flight test. The automated crew vehicle docked with the space station during a six-day flight before returning to land at White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico.

Boeing’s Starliner crew ship is seen moments after docking to the International Space Station’s forward port on the Harmony module. (Credit: NASA TV)

The second uncrewed flight test was necessary because of the failure of a Starliner to reach the space station during a flight in December 2019. The successful mission paved the way for a crewed flight test.

Chinese Launches

Long March-2F launches the Shenzhou-14 crew to the Tiangong space station. (Credit: Su Dong)

China launched 77 payloads into orbit on 21 successful flights that used 12 different rocket variants from nine different booster families. The lone launch by a company not owned by the Chinese government failed.

Chinese Launches
January – July 1, 2022

Launch VehicleCompanySuccessesFailuresTotalNotes
Long March 2CChina Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC)50521 satellites launched
Long March 2DChina Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC)30312 satellites launched
Long March 2FChina Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC)101Shenzhou-14 crew of Chen Dong, Liu Yang and Cai Xuzhe launched to Tiangong space station
Long March 4CChina Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC)6066 satellites launched
Long March 11China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC)1013 satellites launched
Long March 11HChina Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC)1015 satellites launched from barge in South China Sea
Kuaizhou-1AExPace (CASIC subsidiary)1011 space environment observation satellite
Long March 3China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC)101ChinaSat 6D geosynchronous communications satellite
Long March 6AChina Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC)101Maiden flight of Long March 6A variant with 2 satellites
Long March 7China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC)101Tianzhou 4 cargo vehicle to Tiangong space station that carried an unidentified smallsat
Long March 8China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC)101Long March Express commercial rideshare launch with 22 payloads
Hyperbola-1i-Space011Jilin-1 Mofang-01A Earth observation satellite lost
Total:21122

China launched a new three-member crew of Chen Dong, Liu Yang and Cai Xuzhe to the Tiangong space station on June 5. The taikonauts’ six-month stay will include the arrival of the Wentian and Mengtian science modules to complete initial assembly of the station. Wentian is scheduled for launch on July 24; Mengtian will follow in October.

Taikonauts Cai Xuzhe, Chen Dong and Liu Yang. (Credit: CASC)

The Shenzhou-14 taikonauts are the third crew to occupy China’s first permanent space station. The Shenzhou-13 crew of Zhai Zhigang, Wang Yaping and Ye Guangfu ended a 6-month mission in April. The Tianzhou-4 resupply ship was launched to the station in May prior to the arrival of Shenzhou-14.

Chinese Tiangong Launches and Return Flights
January – July 1 2022

DateLaunch VehicleLaunch SiteSpacecraftPurposeCrew
April 16, 2022Long March 2FJiuquanShenzhou-13Crew returnZhai Zhigang, Wang Yaping, Ye Guangfu (launched Oct. 15, 2021)
May 9, 2022Long March 7WenchangTianzhou 4ResupplyNone
June 5, 2022Long March 2FJiuquanShenzhou-14Crew launchChen Dong, Liu Yang, Cai Xuzhe

The Long March 6A rocket made its maiden flight with two satellites aboard in March. The upgrade of the Long March 6 rocket features a first stage equipped with two YF-100 engines instead of one engine and four solid-rocket boosters to improve performance. The upgraded booster can place 4,500 kg (9,921 lb) into a 700 km (435 mile) high sun synchronous orbit (SSO). Long March 6 is limited to launching 1,080 kg (2,381 lb) to SSO.

ExPace, a fully owned subsidiary of the China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation (CASIC), returned the Kuaizhou-1A rocket to flight in June after the booster’s previous flight in December 2021 failed. The company announced in June that it had raised an additional $237 million to expand its launch offerings.

Long March 8 carried 22 satellites into orbit as part of a rideshare mission launched in February. A Long March 11H launched from a barge in the East China Sea on April 30.

A Jilin-1 Mofang-01A Earth observation satellite was lost in the failure of i-space’s Hyperbola-1 rocket. It was the third straight failure of the booster after a successful maiden flight in July 2019 for the private launch provider.

Russian Launches

Soyuz-2 rocket launches 34 OneWeb broadband satellites from the Guiana Space Center. (Credit: Copyright ESA-CNES-Arianespace/Optique Video du CSG – P Piron)

Russia launched nine times during the first half of the year. The nation sent one three-member Soyuz crew vehicle and two Progress resupply ships to the space station. Russia launched five satellites for the Russian military from the Plesetsk cosmodrome. The Plesetsk launches included the maiden flight of the Angara 1.2 light carrier rocket.

Russian Launches
January – July 1, 2022

Launch VehicleCompany/
Agency
Payload(s)Launch Site(s)NotesLaunches
Soyuz 2.1aRoscosmos, Russian Aerospace Force (VKF), Strategic Rocket Forces of the Russian Federation (RVSN RF)2 reconnaissance, 2 Progress, 1 Soyuz, 1 defense communicationsBaikonur (3), Plesetsk (3)1 crew & 2 cargo launches to ISS6
Soyuz 2.1bStrategic Rocket Forces of the Russian Federation (RVSN RF)Lotos-S1 No. 5 electronic intelligencePlesetsk1
Soyuz ST-BArianespace34 OneWebEurope’s Spaceport, French GuianaFinal OneWeb launch1
Angara 1.2Strategic Rocket Forces of the Russian Federation (RVSN SF)MKA EMKA No. 3 reconnaissancePlesetskMaiden booster flight; satellite might have failed in orbit1
Total:9

A Russian Soyuz rocket launched 34 OneWeb broadband satellites from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana. It was to have been the first of seven commercial Soyuz launches that would have completed deployment of OneWeb’s 648-satellite constellation.

The plan foundered after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in late February and the imposition of Western sanctions. Russia demanded that London-based OneWeb give assurances that the constellation would not be used for military purposes in order to launch a batch of 36 broadband satellites from the Baikonur Cosmodrome on March 5. It also demanded that the UK government, which imposed sanctions on Russia over the invasion, divest its ownership of OneWeb.

After OneWeb and the British government refused, Roscosmos removed the Soyuz rocket from the launch pad at Baikonur and took OneWeb’s satellites off the booster. Russia said the company would not receive a refund of its money. The fate of the 36 satellites is unknown.

OneWeb later reached an agreement with SpaceX to complete deployment of the constellation using Falcon 9 rockets. Arianespace also ended cooperation with Russia on subsequent Soyuz launches as a result of European sanctions imposed on Russia.

ExoMars orbiter and rover (Credit: ESA/ATG medialab)

In March, the European Space Agency (ESA) canceled plans to launch the joint European-Russian ExoMars mission aboard a Proton rocket in September. The launch would have placed the Rosalind Franklin rover on the surface of the Red Planet.

Russian ISS Missions

Soyuz MS-21 crew members (front, in yellow) aboard the International Space Station. (Credit: Roscosmos webcast)

Despite tensions with the West over Ukraine and repeated Russian threats to leave the ISS program, launches to the orbital facility continued as scheduled. Russia launched one three-member crew and two Progress resupply ships to the space station during the first six months of the year. One Soyuz spacecraft and a Progress vehicle also departed the station.

Russian International Space Station Launches and Departures
January – July 1 2022

DateLaunch VehicleSpacecraftPurposeCrew
Feb. 15, 2022Soyuz-2.1aProgress MS-19 (80P)ISS resupplyNone
March 18, 2022Soyuz-2.1aSoyuz MS-21ISS crew launchOleg Artemyev, Denis Matveev, Sergey Korsakov
March 30, 2022Soyuz-2.1aSoyuz MS-19ISS crew returnAnton Shkoplerov, Pyotr Dubrov, Mark Vande Hei
June 1, 2022Soyuz-2.1aProgress MS-18Capsule departure (launched Oct. 28, 2021)None
June 3, 2022Soyuz-2.1aProgress MS-20 (81P)ISS resupplyNone

Oleg Artemyev, Denis Matveev and Sergey Korsakov were launched to the space station aboard the Soyuz MS-21 spacecraft on March 18. They joined a seven-member crew that included: Russian cosmonauts Pyotr Dubrov and Anton Shkaplerov; NASA astronauts Barron, Chari, Marshburn and Vande Hei; and ESA astronaut Mauer.

Dubrov, Shkaplerov and Vande Hei departed the space station aboard Soyuz MS-19 on March 30. Dubrov and Vande Hei had spent nearly a year — 355 days — on ISS while Shkaplerov had been there for 176 days. Dubrov and Vande Hei were to have returned to Earth in October 2021 after a six-month mission, but Roscosmos changed the schedule while they were in orbit to accommodate a special project.

On Oct. 5, 2021, Shkaplerov flew film director Klim Shipenko and actress Yulia Peresild to the station where they filmed scenes for a motion picture named, “The Challenge.” Shkaplerov stayed aboard while Shipenko and Peresild returned to Earth with cosmonaut Oleg Novitsky on Soyuz MS-18 after 12 days in space.

Launches by Other Nations

Nuri rocket lifts off from the Naro Space Center on June 21, 2022. (Credit: KARI)

There were a total of five launches by Europe, India, Iran and South Korea during the first half of 2022.

Global Launches, Excluding U.S. and China
January – July 1, 2022

Launch VehicleCompany/ AgencyNation / EntityPayload(s)NotesLaunches
PSLVIndian Space Research Organisation (ISRO)IndiaEarth observation (3), ionospheric research (1), technology demo (1), education (1)Experimental module with 6 hosted payloads attached to upper stage for first time2
Ariane 5ArianespaceEuropeGEOSAT-2 & MEASAT-3d geosynchronous comsats1
NuriKorea Aerospace Research Institute (KARI)South KoreaPerformance verification satellite, dummy satellite, 5 CubeSatsFirst successful launch of domestically produced launch vehicle1
QasedIslamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC)IranNoor-2
reconnaissance satellite
Shahrud Missile Test Site1
5

South Korea achieved a major breakthrough with the successful launch of its Nuri (KSLV-II) booster on June 21. The first orbital-class rocket produced entirely in South Korea carried a performance verification satellite, dummy payload, and 5 CubeSats into orbit. Nuri failed on its maiden flight in October 2021 due to a design flaw in its third stage.

Nuri is designed to launch 2,600 kg (5,732 lb) into a 300 km (186 mile) high low Earth orbit (LEO) or 1,500 kg (3,307 lb) into a 600-800 km (373-497 mile) high orbit.

India launched its Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) twice. Payloads included three Earth observation satellites and one spacecraft each devoted to ionospheric research, technology demonstration and education. In a first for India, the second PSLV flight included an experimental module with six hosted payloads on the rocket’s upper stage.

Europe’s launch total slumped to a single Ariane 5 flight that orbited two geosynchronous communications satellites. ESA is in the process of transitioning to the new Ariane 6 booster, which is set to fly for the first time in 2023. Europe is also in transition from the Vega light launcher to the Vega C medium launcher, the latter of which made a successful maiden flight on July 13.

The Iranian Revolutionary Guard launched a Noor-2 reconnaissance satellite aboard a Qased rocket. It was the second success in as many attempts for the solid-fuel small satellite launcher.

Orbital Launches by Company/Organization

The SpaceX Dragon Endurance spacecraft is seen just after undocking from the forward port of the International Space Station’s Harmony module at 1:20 a.m. (Credit: NASA TV

SpaceX led the world with 27 successful Falcon 9 launches. Elon Musk’s company accounted for 35.1 percent of all launches worldwide.

Orbital Launches by Company, Organization

Company/ OrganizationNationBoostersSuccessesFailuresTotalNotes
SpaceXUnited StatesFalcon 927027Two 4-member crews launched to ISS, 15 dedicated Starlink launches, 3 Transporter rideshare missions
China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC)ChinaLong March 2C, 2D, 2F; Long March 3; Long March 4C; Long March 6A; Long March 7; Long March 8; Long March 11, 11H20020Crew and cargo flights to Tiangong space station
Rocket LabUnited StatesElectron404Launches from Mahia Peninsula, New Zealand; first deep-space launch (CAPSTONE)
United Launch Alliance (ULA)United StatesAtlas V404Boeing CST-100 Starliner launch to ISS
Strategic Rocket Forces of the Russian Federation (RVSN SF)RussiaAngara 1.2 (1), Soyuz-2.1a (2), Soyuz-2.1b (1)404Plesetsk Cosmodrome
RoscosmosRussiaSoyuz 2.1A3031 crew and 2 cargo launches to ISS
Astra SpaceUnited StatesRocket 3.3123
ArianespaceEuropeAriane 5, Soyuz ST-B202Includes Russian launch from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana
Virgin OrbitUnited StatesLauncherOne202First night launch
Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO)IndiaPSLV202Experimental module with 6 payloads attached to upper stage for first time
Northrop GrummanUnited StatesAntares101ISS resupply mission
ExPaceChinaKuaizhou-1A101Successful return to flight after failure in December
Korea Aerospace Research Institute (KARI)South KoreaNuri101First successful launch of domestically produced launch vehicle
Russian Aerospace Force (VKS)RussiaSoyuz-2.1a101Plesetsk Cosmodrome
Islamic Revolutionary Guard CorpsIranQased101Shahrud Missile Test Site
i-SpaceChinaHyperbola-1011Third straight launch failure
74377

The China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC) was second with 20 successful launches, accounting for 26 percent of the global total. CASC launched all but two of China’s orbital flights. ExPace successfully returned the Kuaizhou-1A rocket to flight, allowing the company to raise more capital. i-Space’s Hyperbola-1 booster failed for the third time in four attempts.

Rocket Lab and United Launch Alliance launched the Electron and Atlas V rockets four times apiece. Astra Space’s Rocket 3.3 succeeded once and failed twice. Virgin Orbit conducted two successful flights of its LauncherOne booster. And Northrop Grumman used an Antares rocket to launch a Cygnus resupply ship to ISS.

Rocket 3.3 lifts off from Kodiak Island on March 15, 2022. (Credit: Astra Space/NASASpaceflight.com webcast)

Russian launches were conducted by three different government organizations. The Strategic Rocket Forces of the Russian Federation (RVSN SF) launched four times from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome. Roscosmos launched a crewed Soyuz spacecraft and two Progress resupply ships from the Baikonur Cosmodrome. And the Russian Aerospace Force launched once from Plesetsk.

Arianespace launched Ariane 5 and Soyuz ST-B boosters from French Guiana. The Indian Space Research Organisation conducted two PSLV flights. Korea Aerospace Research Institute (KARI) and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard conducted successful launches.

Launches by Booster

The 77 global launches involved 22 different families of rockets, three of which had multiple variants to accommodate different payload needs.

Launches by Booster
January – July 1, 2022

Launch VehicleCompany/ OrganizationCountrySuccessesFailuresTotalNotes
Falcon 9SpaceXUnited States27027Two crews launched to ISS, 15 dedicated Starlink launches, 960 payloads launched
Long March 2C, 2D, 2FChina Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC)China808Shenzhou-14 launch to Tiangong Space Station (Long March 2F)
Soyuz 2.1a, 2.1b, ST-BArianespace, Roscosmos, Russian Aerospace Force (VKF), Strategic Rocket Forces of the Russian Federation (RVSN RF)Russia808Includes one launch of Soyuz ST-B from French Guiana
Long March 4CChina Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC)China606
Atlas VUnited Launch Alliance (ULA)United States404Boeing CST-100 Starliner to ISS
ElectronRocket LabUnited States404Launches from Mahia Peninsula, New Zealand; first deep space launch (CAPSTONE)
Rocket 3.3Astra SpaceUnited States12322 satellites launched, 6 payloads lost
LauncherOneVirgin OrbitUnited States202First night launch
Long March 11, 11HChina Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC)China202Launch from barge in South China Sea
PSLVIndian Space Research Organisation (ISRO)India202Experimental module with six payloads attached to upper stage for first time
Angara 1.2Strategic Rocket Forces of the Russian Federation (RVSN RF)Russia101Maiden flight
AntaresNorthrop GrummanUnited States101ISS Resupply mission
Ariane 5ArianespaceEurope1012 geosynchronous comsats
Kuaizhou-1AExPaceChina101Return to flight after failure in December
Long March 3China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC)China101
Long March 6AChina Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC)China101Maiden flight of Long March 6A variant
Long March 7China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC)China101Tianzhou cargo vehicle launch to Tiangong space station
Long March 8China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC)China101Long March Express commercial rideshare launch with 22 payloads
NuriKorea Aerospace Research Institute (KARI)South Korea101First successful launch of domestically produced launch vehicle
QasedIslamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC)Iran101Reconnaissance satellite
Hyperbola-1i-SpaceChina011Jilin-1 Mofang-01A Earth observation satellite lost
74377

SpaceX’s Falcon 9 launched 27 times. The company plans to resume launches of its larger Falcon Heavy rocket with three first stage core boosters later this year after a gap of more than three years.

China’s Long March 2 family of boosters was tied with Russia’s Soyuz family with eight launches apiece. Three variants of each booster flew.

China conducted six launches of the Long March 4C. Rocket Lab and ULA conducted four launches apiece of the Electron and Atlas V rockets, respectively. Only one launch of Astra Space’s Rocket 3.3 succeeded. CASC’s Long March 11 family, ISRO’s PSLV and Virgin Orbit’s LauncherOne flew two times apiece.

China’s Long March 6A and South Korea’s Nuri were launched successfully for the first time. Eight different types of boosters flew successful one time apiece. Hyperbola-1 failed in its sole launch attempt.

Launches by Spaceport

PSLV rocket launches the EOS-4 Earth observation satellite. (Credit: ISRO)

The 77 launch attempts were conducted from 17 spaceports and a barge located in the nine countries.

Launches by Location
January – July 1 2022

Launch SiteCountryLaunch Vehicle(s)SuccessesFailuresTotal
Cape CanaveralUnited StatesFalcon 9 (13), Atlas V (4), Rocket 3.3 (2)17219
JiuquanChinaLong March 4C (5), Long March 2C (2), Long March 2F (1), Long March 11 (1), Kuaizhou-1A (1), Hyperbola-1 (1)10111
KennedyUnited StatesFalcon 9909
PlesetskRussiaSoyuz-2.1a (3), Soyuz-2.1b (1), Angara-1.2 (1)505
VandenbergUnited StatesFalcon 9505
MahiaNew ZealandElectron404
TaiyuanChinaLong March 2D (2), Long March 4C (1), Long March 6A (1)404
XichangChinaLong March 2C (2), Long March 2D (1), Long March 3B (1)404
BaikonurKazahkstanSoyuz-2.1a303
KourouFrench GuianaAriane 5, Soyuz ST-B202
Mojave Air and Space PortUnited StatesLauncherOne/Boeing 747202
Satish DhawanIndiaPSLV202
WenchangChinaLong March 7, Long March 8202
Tai Rui Launch Platform, East China SeaChinaLong March 11H101
Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport (Wallops Island, Va.)United StatesAntares101
Naro Space CenterSouth KoreaNuri101
Pacific Spaceport Complex — AlaskaUnited StatesRocket 3.3101
Shahrud Missile Test SiteIranQased101
Total74377

United States
35-2

Florida led the world by hosting 28 orbital launches, with 26 successes and two failures. That amounts to 36.4 percent of all orbital launches. The figure includes 19 flights from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, and nine Falcon 9 launches from the adjoining Kennedy Space Center (KSC). SpaceX launched 13 times from Cape Canaveral, ULA four times, and Astra Space twice.

A ULA Atlas V rocket carrying the USSF-12 mission for the U.S. Space Force lifts off from Space Launch Complex-41 at 7:15 p.m. EDT on July 1. (Credit: United Launch Alliance)

There were seven launches from California, including five from Vandenberg Space Force Base and two by Virgin Orbit from the Mojave Air and Space Port. Wallops Island in Virginia and the Pacific Spaceport Complex — Alaska each hosted a single launch.

China
21-1

Eleven of China’s 22 launches were conducted from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center using six different kinds of rockets. A Long March 2F rocket launched three taikonauts on a six-month mission to the Chinese space station aboard the Shenzhou-14 spacecraft. The commercial company ExPace succeeded with a Kuaizhou-1A launch, while i-space Hyperbola-1 rocket failed in flight.

The Taiyuan and Xichang spaceports hosted four launches apiece. Wenchang hosted two flights, including the launch of the Tianzhou 4 resupply ship to China’s space station on May 9.

A Long March 11H booster was launched from a floating platform in the East China Sea.

Russia
8-0

Soyuz-2 rocket launches a military satellite from Plesetsk Cosmodrome. (Credit: Russian Ministry of Defense)

Russia conducted five military launches from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome. The list included four Soyuz boosters and the maiden flight of the Angara 1.2 small satellite launch vehicle.

Roscosmos State Corporation launched two Progress resupply ships and a crewed Soyuz vehicle from Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. Russia has a long-term lease on the Soviet Union’s spaceport.

Arianespace managed the launch of a Soyuz ST-B rocket carrying 34 OneWeb satellites from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana. The European company suspended cooperation on future Soyuz launches after the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February.

Russia conducted no launches from its Vostochny Cosmodrome during the first half of the year.

Launches From Other Spaceports

Ariane 5 launches on June 22, 2022. (Credit: Arianespace)

Rocket Lab launched its Electron rocket four times from its base on Mahia Peninsula in New Zealand. The company has received permission to launch Electron boosters from a new launch pad on Wallops Island in Virginia. Rocket Lab is also building a manufacturing facility for its Neutron rocket in the state.

French Guiana hosted launches of the Ariane 5 and Soyuz ST-B boosters. Future launches of Soyuz ST-B boosters from Kourou have been suspended due to sanctions.

South Korea’s Naro Space Center hosted only its second successful orbital launch in June. The success came more than eight years after a KSLV-I booster that consisted of a Russian liquid first stage and South Korean solid fuel second stage orbited a satellite on Jan. 30, 2013.

India conducted two PSLV launches from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre. Iran launched a Qased rocket with a reconnaissance satellite aboard from the Shahrud Missile Test Site.