SpaceX plans to launch another big batch of its Starlink internet satellites to orbit on Monday night (Jan. 9), and you can watch the action live.
A Falcon 9 rocket topped with 51 of SpaceX’s Starlink internet satellites is scheduled to lift off from California’s Vandenberg Space Force Base on Monday at 11:15 p.m. EST (8:15 p.m. local California time; 0415 GMT on Jan. 10).
Watch it live here at Space.com, courtesy of SpaceX, or directly via the company (opens in new tab). Coverage is expected to begin about five minutes before liftoff.
Related: 10 weird things about SpaceX’s Starlink internet satellites
If all goes according to plan, the Falcon 9’s first stage will come back to Earth just under nine minutes after launch, touching down on the SpaceX droneship Of Course I Still Love You, which will be stationed in the Pacific Ocean.
It will be the ninth launch and landing for this particular booster, according to EverydayAstronaut.com (opens in new tab).
The Falcon 9’s upper stage, meanwhile, will haul the Starlink satellites to low Earth orbit, deploying all 51 of them 29 minutes after liftoff, according to a SpaceX mission description (opens in new tab).
Starlink is SpaceX’s broadband constellation, which currently consists of more than 3,300 operational satellites (opens in new tab).
That number is ever-increasing, as Monday night’s planned liftoff shows, and may eventually become truly staggering. SpaceX has approval to launch 12,000 Starlink spacecraft and has applied for permission to loft nearly 30,000 more on top of that.
The Starlink launch is the first of two that SpaceX plans to pull off Monday in a 35-minute span. The company also aims to launch 40 OneWeb internet satellites atop a Falcon 9, which is scheduled to lift off from Florida’s Cape Canaveral Space Force Station at 11:50 p.m. EST (0450 GMT on Jan. 10).
Mike Wall is the author of “Out There (opens in new tab)” (Grand Central Publishing, 2018; illustrated by Karl Tate), a book about the search for alien life. Follow him on Twitter @michaeldwall (opens in new tab). Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom (opens in new tab) or Facebook (opens in new tab).