SpaceX Set for Record Setting Rideshare Satellite Deployments on Transporter-1 Falcon 9 Launch Jan. 23: Watch Live/Photos

SpaceX Set for Record Setting Rideshare Satellite Deployments on Falcon 9 Transporter-1 Launch Jan. 23: Watch Live/Photos
Up Close nose cone view of SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket resting horizontal for Transporter-1 rideshare mission slated for liftoff at 9:40 a.m. ET, Jan. 23, 2021 from Space Launch Complex 40 (SLC-40) on Cape Canaveral Space Force Station. Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

For SpaceUpClose.com & RocketSTEM

CAPE CANAVERAL SPACE FORCE STATION, FL – SpaceX is now targeting liftoff of their first dedicated SmallSat Rideshare Program mission on Saturday morning, Jan. 23 with a record setting number of 133 nano and micro satellites as well as another 10 Starlinks on the firms third rocket liftoff of 2021 on a 5x recycled Falcon 9 booster from the US and Florida’s Space Coast.

“SpaceX is targeting Saturday, January 23 for launch of Transporter-1, SpaceX’s first dedicated SmallSat Rideshare Program mission, from Space Launch Complex 40 (SLC-40) at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida,” SpaceX announced.

Transporter-1 will carry payloads for Planet, Kepler Communications, Spire, Capella Space, ICEYE, NASA, and a range of additional commercial and government customers in addition to SpaceX’s own Starlinks.

Up Close nose cone view of SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket resting horizontal for Transporter-1 rideshare mission slated for liftoff at 9:40 a.m. ET, Jan. 23, 2021 from Space Launch Complex 40 (SLC-40) on Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, Florida. Credit: Jean Wright/spaceupclose.com

Furthermore Transporter-1 counts as SpaceX’s second launch this week following the Jan. 20 Inauguration Day 2021 liftoff of the 17th Starlink broadband internet satellite mission – check out our story and photos.

And Saturday’s weather outlook is decent at this time at the Florida Space Port – so start making plans if you wish to witness the breakfast time liftoff this weekend.

The SpaceX Falcon 9 Transporter-1 rideshare mission is slated for blastoff during a 42-minute launch window that opens at 9:40 a.m. EST, or 14:40 GMT, Saturday, Jan 23, 2021 from seaside Space Launch Complex 40 (SLC-40) on Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.

The launch window extends 42 minutes until closing at 10:22 a.m. EST (1522 GMT)

You can watch the SpaceX launch live at www.spacex.com about 15 minutes before scheduled launch time.

SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket resting horizontal for Transporter-1 rideshare mission slated for liftoff at 9:40 a.m. ET, Jan. 23, 2021 from Space Launch Complex 40 (SLC-40) on Cape Canaveral Space Force Station. Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

Enjoy our eyewitness prelaunch photos of the Falcon 9 at pad 40 from the team of Ken Kremer and Jean Wright at Space UpClose.

The 229-foot-tall (70-meter) Falcon 9 rocket was raised erect today, Friday, Jan. 22 and is poised for liftoff to deliver the dozens of rideshare satellites to low Earth orbit (LEO).

SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket resting horizontal for Transporter-1 rideshare mission slated for liftoff at 9:40 a.m. ET, Jan. 23, 2021 from Space Launch Complex 40 (SLC-40) on Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, Florida. Credit: Jean Wright/spaceupclose.com

Encapsulated inside the nose cone on board this Falcon 9 rocket launch “are 133 commercial and government spacecraft (including CubeSats, microsats, and orbital transfer vehicles) and 10 Starlink satellites – the most spacecraft ever deployed on a single mission,” said SpaceX.

The smallsats are targeting an orbit roughly 326 miles (525 kilometers) in altitude, with an inclination of 97.5 degrees to the equator.

Watch for our post launch story with complete details.

The Starlink satellites aboard this mission will be the first in the constellation to deploy to a polar orbit.

They will fly aboard the Falcon 9 rocket that’s launching on a southerly polar launch corridor – similar to the one pioneered by SpaceX in August 2020 on the launch of Argentina’s SAOCOM 1B radar observation satellite.

SAOCOM 1B mission counts as the first launch into polar orbit from Cape Canaveral since the 1960s.

To date following this weeks 17th Starlink mission on Inauguration Day this brings the total number of Starlink satellites launched to 1,015 internet satellites.

SpaceX Falcon 9 blasts off at 8:02 a.m. ET Jan. 20, 2021 as 1st stage sets record as 1st to launch 8 times on 17th Starlink mission delivering 60 broadband internet satellites to LEO from Launch Complex 39A (LC-39A) at Kennedy Space Center, Florida – with beautiful rippling water reflections. Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

Falcon 9’s first stage booster previously supported four missions including launch of Crew Dragon’s second demonstration mission Demo-2 last year as well as the ANASIS-II mission, a Starlink mission, and launch of Dragon’s 21st cargo resupply mission to the International Space Station in Dec. 2020.

Following stage separation, SpaceX will land Falcon 9’s first stage on the Of Course I Still Love You (OCISLY) droneship, which is already stationed in the Atlantic Ocean of the southern coast of Florida.

Weather is 60% favorable for conditions at launch time according to the 45th Space Wing

Primary concerns: Cumulus Cloud Rule and Thick Cloud Layer Rule.

In case of a delay for any reason a backup launch opportunity is available on Sunday, Jan. 24 with a 70% chance of favorable weather conditions.

Here is the satellite deployment schedule from SpaceX:

00:58:59   36 Planet SuperDoves begin deployment

00:59:00   17 spacecraft aboard Kepler’s port begin deployment

00:59:09   NASA’s V-R3x mission, 3 CubeSats aboard Maverick’s Mercury dispenser, begin deployment

01:08:19   Nanoracks’ Eyries-1 mission’s 9 payloads begin deployment

01:08:44   EXOport-2, with 28 spacecraft aboard, begins deployment

01:13:58   Capella-3 deploys

01:14:10   EXOport-1, with two ICEYE satellites aboard, begins deployment

01:14:23   Spaceflight Inc. customer iQPS’s second SAR satellite, iQPs-2, deploys

01:15:38   Capella-4 deploys

01:16:10   Spaceflight Inc’s Sherpa-FX1 spacecraft deploys with 13 spacecraft on board

01:16:28   D-Orbit’s Pulse mission deploys with 20 spacecraft on board

01:31:10   Starlink satellites deploy

 

 

My prelaunch photos with the rocket horizontal at pad 40 were featured at WKMG CBS 6 Orlando and WFTV ABC 9 Orlando:

SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying Transporter-1 mission for launch Jan 23, 2021 featured at WKMG CBS 6 Orlando. Screenshot Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com/WKMG CBS 6

 

SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying Transporter-1 mission for launch Jan 23, 2021 featured at WFTV ABC 9 Orlando. Screenshot Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com/WFTV ABC 9

Watch Ken’s continuing reports about NASA missions and Artemis, Mars Perseverance and Curiosity rovers, SpaceX, Starlink, Commercial Crew and ISS from onsite for live reporting of upcoming and recent SpaceX and ULA launches including Crew 1 & 2, Demo-2 and Starliner, X-37B, Solar Orbiter, NRO spysats and more at the Kennedy Space Center and Cape Canaveral Space Force Station. 

Stay tuned here for Ken’s continuing Earth and Planetary science and human spaceflight news: www.kenkremer.com –www.spaceupclose.com – twitter @ken_kremer – email: ken at kenkremer.com

Dr. Kremer is a research scientist and journalist based in the KSC area, active in outreach and interviewed regularly on TV and radio about space topics.
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Ken’s photos are for sale and he is available for lectures and outreach events

Please consider supporting Ken’s work by donating at Patreon:

https://www.patreon.com/kenkremer

 

 

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Ken Kremer

Watch for Ken’s continuing onsite coverage of NASA, SpaceX, ULA, Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and more space and mission reports direct from Kennedy Space Center and Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida and Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. Stay tuned here for Ken's continuing Earth and Planetary science and human spaceflight news. Dr. Kremer is a research scientist and journalist based in the KSC area, active in outreach and interviewed regularly on TV and radio about space topics. Ken’s photos are for sale and he is available for lectures and outreach events.

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