12 (XINHUA) — U.S. SPACE EXPLORATION TECHNOLOGY COMPANY SPACEX SUCCESSFULLY LAUNCHED A SECOND BATCH OF 60 STARLINK SATELLITES USING A RECYCLED FALCON 9 ROCKET ON MONDAY, ANOTHER STEP TOWARD MUSK’S VISION OF CREATING A SPACE-BASED NETWORK AND PROVIDING BROADBAND SERVICES AROUND THE WORLD, FOREIGN MEDIA REPORTED.
Rockets launched three times were used and successfully recovered
Use second-hand rectifier for the first time
The mission took another step toward achieving its ambitious design goals by successfully launching and reselling the Falcon 9 rocket for the first time on four orbital-class missions at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. In terms of added value, the reusability of multiple parts of the Falcon 9 rocket is one of the most important achievements of the mission.
Pictured: The Falcon 9 became SpaceX’s first rocket to successfully carry out four orbital-class launches
With the success of the Starlink-1 launch mission, the rocket has now launched a total of more than 35 tons of payload into Earth orbit. During its third launch in February 2019, the rocket also made its first commercial attempt at a lunar landing, but failed. Still, SpaceX’s breakthrough in reusable rocket development is already changing the game.
In addition to the Falcon 9 rocket’s historic fourth launch and recovery, the Starlink-1 mission marks SpaceX’s first second-hand payload rectifier, a huge step forward in ensuring that almost all future Falcon rocket launches can reach 80 percent flight verification and 80 percent reusable levels. The StarLink-1 payload rectifier was used for the first time in the Arabsat 6A mission launch in April 2019.
Despite the extremely difficult conditions for the launch and recovery of rectifiers, this successful reuse shows that almost any rectifier can be reused at least once in the future and can be reused in an internal Starlink satellite launch mission, even if not for a customer launch.
Elon Musk, SpaceX’s chief executive, has previously said that the Falcon 9 (and heavy-duty) rocket’s rectifiers account for about 10 percent of the Falcon 9’s launch cost, meaning the cost of each rectifier is about $6 million. In addition, rectifier production is considered to be the longest delivery time in the SpaceX rocket manufacturing process, so much so that without expensive production facility upgrades, rectifiers can easily become a bottleneck limiting the launch rhythm.
Instead, SpaceX may choose to spend as much time and money on rectifiers to be recycled and reused on a regular basis. The program passed a turning point in June and August 2019, when the rectifier recycling vessel “GO Ms. Tree” successfully captured two and a half-sided rectifiers in a row, proving that recycling was feasible. The Starlink-1 launch on November 11th also proved that rehousing hoods can be reused even if they were not successfully recycled, meaning that re-use of re-use of rehousing swashes salvaged from the sea may be much easier and more feasible.
Musk said space Internet services would be an important source of funding for SpaceX. He founded SpaceX in 2002 with the ultimate goal of enabling people to live on other planets. SpaceX launched its first Starlink satellite in May and has patched the design to increase spectrum capacity.
SpaceX plans to continue launching Starlink satellites in bulk and says it will serve northern America and parts of Canada by 2020, according to Starlink’s website.
“We think this is a way for SpaceX to generate revenue that could be used to fund more advanced rocket and spacecraft development, and it’s a key stepping stone to building bases on the moon and self-sufficient cities on Mars,” Musk said on a May earnings conference call. “