SpaceX launch recap: Starlink mission Friday night from Cape Canaveral, Florida

Launch recap:  Scroll down for live coverage of the Wednesday, May 22, liftoff of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 40.

Wednesday was the first of back-to-back launch days!

SpaceX launched a Falcon 9 rocket with the latest batch of group six Starlink satellites. SpaceX had stated the launch was planned for 10:35 p.m., yet backup opportunities ran until 2:31 a.m. Thursday.

While SpaceX typically launches in the earlier part of that window, the weather on the Space Coast, as well as the booster landing location, play a part in timing. However, according to the Space Force's 45th Weather Squadron, conditions for the launch window were 95% favorable. With this, the rocket saw an on time lift off of 10:35 p.m. EDT.

Those near or south of the Cape had a good view of this nighttime launch, as the rocket traveled in a southeast trajectory.

When is the next Florida rocket launch? Is there a launch today? Upcoming SpaceX, NASA, ULA rocket launch schedule in Florida

Thursday, SpaceX plans to launch yet another batch of Starlink satellites. This launch window runs from 6:45 p.m. until 11:16 p.m. Thursday. SpaceX has yet to confirm this mission, yet the FAA states the mission as Starlink 6-63.

Countdown Timer

SpaceX booster lands

Update 10:43 p.m.: The booster has landed on A Shortfall of Gravitas.

SpaceX Liftoff!

Update 10:35 p.m.: SpaceX has just launched the Falcon 9 rocket carrying 23 Starlink satellites from Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.

SpaceX rocket launch webcast begins

Update 10:30 p.m.: SpaceX's launch webcast hosted on X (formerly Twitter) is has begun.

Liftoff is scheduled in five minutes from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.

We are 10 minutes from tonight’s SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launch!

Update 10:25 p.m.: T-10 minutes! Head outside if you plan on catching this launch! If you have clear skies, it will be hard to miss the bright rocket rising into the sky.

Simply look towards the direction South of Kennedy Space Center from your direction.

SpaceX Falcon 9 booster

Update 10:10 p.m.:  Tonight, the booster will land out on A Shortfall of Gravitas droneship in the Atlantic Ocean. Local sonic booms will not be heard — just the rocket’s rumble for those close to the Cape.

SpaceX Falcon 9 fueling now underway in Cape Canaveral

Update 10:02 p.m.: SpaceX has confirmed fueling of the Falcon 9 has begun.

That means tonight’s Starlink mission is now locked in to lift off at 10:35 p.m. without any countdown delays, or else the launch must be postponed.

If for any reason there is a delay, the next launch opportunity begins tomorrow night at 10:06 p.m. EDT.

SpaceX launch countdown timeline

Update 9:55 p.m.: As we wait for word that SpaceX has begun fueling, here's a behind-the-scenes rundown of SpaceX’s countdown timeline. T-minus:

  • 38 minutes: SpaceX launch director verifies “go” for propellant load.

  • 35 minutes: Rocket-grade kerosene and first-stage liquid oxygen loading begins.

  • 16 minutes: Second-stage liquid oxygen loading begins.

  • 7 minutes: Falcon 9 begins engine chill prior to launch.

  • 1 minute: Command flight computer begins final prelaunch checks; propellant tank pressurization to flight pressure begins.

  • 45 seconds: SpaceX launch director verifies “go” for launch.

  • 3 seconds: Engine controller commands engine ignition sequence to start.

  • 0 seconds: Liftoff.

Brevard EOC ready for tonight's SpaceX launch

Update 9:45 p.m.: Brevard EOC has announced that launch preparations are underway.

SpaceX Starship update

Update 9:40 p.m.: Meanwhile in Boca Chica, Texas, SpaceX has stated it has completed launch rehearsal for its fourth Starship flight. While an official launch date has yet to be announced, Elon Musk has stated on X that Starship could launch in as soon as two weeks.

The team’s goal of this test flight is to get through reentry.

In other Starship news, local meetings will be held on June 12-13 in Brevard for FAA officials to collect comments from locals on the proposed Starship site at KSC Pad 39A.

A virtual meeting will be held on the 17th for those who cannot make it in person.

Tonight's SpaceX Falcon 9 booster

Update 9:30 p.m.: Tonight’s booster is flying for the eighth time. Its past missions include three other Starlink missions, ESA Euclid, CRS-30, and two Axiom Space crewed missions: Ax-2 and Ax-3.

Tonight’s SpaceX launch weather outlook

Update 9:20 p.m.: The 45th Weather Squadron calls for 95% favorable conditions for tonight’s launch window.

A night launch is quite the sight and is hard to miss. Make sure to follow along!

The first of back-to-back SpaceX falcon 9 launches

Update 9:10 p.m.:. The SpaceX team has been active. Earlier today, SpaceX launched the National Reconnaissance Office NROL-146 mission from California.

Now, SpaceX is targeting 10:35 p.m. EDT to launch the next batch of Starlink satellites from SLC-40. This will be the Starlink 6-62 mission.

Tomorrow evening, SpaceX will launch another Starlink, Starlink 6-63, from the Space Coast. This launch window is open from 6:45 p.m. until 11:16 p.m.

Brooke Edwards is a Space Reporter for Florida Today. Contact her at or on X: @brookeofstars.

This article originally appeared on Florida Today: SpaceX launch recap: Starlink mission Friday night from Space Coast