A veteran Falcon 9 rocket is scheduled to launch SpaceX’s Starlink 6 mission the historic Launch Pad 39A of NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida at 3:37 p.m. EDT (1937 GMT). The rocket’s first-stage booster has flown three times before.
You can watch the Starlink launch live here and on the Space.com homepage, courtesy of SpaceX. You can also watch the launch directly via SpaceX’s webast page here. SpaceX webcasts usually begin about 15 minutes before liftoff.
Despite its name, Starlink 6 is actually the seventh batch of satellites to launch into space for SpaceX’s growing broadband internet megaconstellation. The company launched its first Starlink flight in May 2019, with a second flight last November and four more since January of this year.
Currently, SpaceX has 360 satellites in orbit. The Starlink 6 mission will boost that number to 420.
SpaceX’s Starlink satellite network is a megaconstellation designed to provide fast and affordable internet access to people around the world, particularly in remote or under-served locations. The satellites connect to a ground box to link users to the internet. SpaceX CEO Elon Musk demonstrated the technology last year.
SpaceX’s initial plan is a constellation of 12,000 Starlink satellites, with the seeking permission to expand that fleet up to 30,000 satellites if needed. Last year, SpaceX Musk has said that at least 400 Starlink satellites would be needed to start basic service, with 800 satellites required for “moderate” coverage.
With Starlink 6, SpaceX will surpass that 400-satellite target. SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell has said that Starlink service would likely begin in 2020.
As is typical for SpaceX launches, Starlink 6 features several components making a return trip to space. The Falcon 9 first-stage booster has launched three missions, including SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft test flight in March 2019, a three-satellite mission for Canada later that year and the fourth Starlink launch in early 2020.
The mission’s payload, the two-piece nosecone that protects the Starlink satellites during launch, is also fully reused. One half of the fairing was captured by a SpaceX recovery boat equipped with a giant net, while the other was fished out of the sea from a previous flight. Reusing payload fairings can save at least $6 million per flight, SpaceX has said.
Today’s mission will mark SpaceX’s third flight to feature recycled payload fairings and the fifth time a Falcon 9 booster has made a fourth flight.
An Asteroid Bigger Than The Empire State Building Poses ‘No Danger’ On Saturday Night, Says NASA – Forbes
A huge near-Earth asteroid will pass our planet tonight at a safe distance of 3.2 million miles, according to NASA.
After a spate of doom-laden headlines the space agency felt the need yesterday to update a previous post about near-Earth asteroids with the following note:
“Asteroid 2002 NN4 will safely pass by the Earth on June 6 at a distance of approximately 3.2 million miles (5.1 million kilometers), about 13 times further away from the Earth than the Moon is. There is no danger the asteroid will hit the Earth.”
Asteroid 2002 NN4’s closest approach to Earth will be at 11:20 p.m. EDT. on Saturday, June 6, 2020.
NASA also tweeted the same advice:
NASA Asteroid Watch then tweeted this image of the asteroid’s trajectory:
How big is Asteroid 2002 NN4?
Asteroid 2002 NN4 is huge. Measuring between 820 feet and 1,870 feet (250 meters to 570 meters) according to Space.com. New York City’s Empire State Building is 443.2 meters tall, including its antenna.
That’s over a dozen times bigger than the asteroid that exploded over Chelyabinsk, Russia, in 2013. That was the biggest meteor for over a century.
Would asteroid 2002 NN4 be dangerous if it hit Earth?
Yes—asteroid 2002 NN4 is city-killer size, but it’s not going to cause any harm to anyone.
Wishing you clear skies and wide eyes.
Crew Dragon with two NASA astronauts docks to ISS – TASS
NEW YORK, May 31. /TASS/. The Crew Dragon spacecraft with Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken on board has successfully docked to the International Space Station (ISS), as follows from a NASA broadcast on Sunday.
The spacecraft began approaching the ISS about two hours before docking than was carried out 10:16 ahead of the schedule. The Crew Dragon spacecraft was launched using the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket at 22.22 pm Moscow time on May 30 from the Cape Canaveral, Florida.
Crew Dragon is a configuration of the cargo spacecraft Dragon, which had already delivered cargoes to the ISS. A Falcon-9 rocket put the cargo vehicle in space on March 2. Its docking with the ISS was carried out automatically the next day.
NASA stopped crewed flights in 2011 after the Space Shuttle program came to an end. From that moment on all astronauts were delivered to the ISS and back by Russia’s Soyuz spacecraft. Originally the Untied States was to start using commercial spacecraft for crewed missions in 2017.
Toddler could be battling rare syndrome in response to COVID-19 – Winnipeg Free Press
More than a month after testing positive for COVID-19, a Winnipeg toddler is fighting another illness – a possible rare inflammatory syndrome that could be part of the body’s reaction to new viruses.
The girl’s mother told CBC News doctors are trying to find out whether the one-year-old has developed Kawasaki disease, or multi-system inflammatory syndrome in children, now that she is negative for COVID-19 but is still seriously ill.
To read more of this story first reported by CBC News, click here.
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