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Elon Musk shares stunning image of Starlink rocket launch

As the world’s media went into overdrive on Thursday night over news that Elon Musk had finally got his hands on Twitter, the man at the center of the frenzy was apparently looking the other way, enjoying the latest launch of one of his SpaceX rockets heading to orbit on another Starlink mission.

In his first tweets since becoming “Chief Twit” (it’s on his Twitter profile), Musk shared photos and videos from the space mission with his 110 million followers, including the rocket’s launch and landing, together with an incredibly beautiful shot (below) of the Falcon 9 on its way to orbit.

Falcon rockets to orbit as seen from LA pic.twitter.com/r8L2SbLC3p

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 28, 2022

While many of SpaceX’s Starlink missions launch from the Kennedy Space Center on the East Coast, Thursday evening’s started from Space Launch Complex 4E at Vandenberg Space Force Base, on the other side of the country in California.

Here’s the Falcon 9 rocket blasting skyward, carrying to orbit a batch of 53 Starlink internet satellites.

Liftoff! pic.twitter.com/B0Il6HsYBS

— SpaceX (@SpaceX) October 28, 2022

A short while later, the first-stage booster made a perfect landing on the Of Course I Still Love You droneship stationed in the Pacific Ocean.

Falcon 9’s first stage has landed on the Of Course I Still Love You droneship pic.twitter.com/bIFlERy14S

— SpaceX (@SpaceX) October 28, 2022

The first-stage booster supporting the mission previously launched the Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich satellite, the DART asteroid mission, and five other Starlink missions. The reusability of the Falcon 9’s first-stage booster is a key part of SpaceX’s vision for spaceflight as the process paves the way for lower mission costs and greater launch frequency.

SpaceX now has more than 3,000 Starlink internet satellites in orbit, with more heading to space all the time.

Since launching its Starlink broadband service for residential customers in 2020, SpaceX has been steadily expanding its coverage and currently serves more than 400,000 customers in around 36 countries.

It’s also been rolling out additional services, moving beyond residential to also include Starlink systems for aircraft, boats, and, in the last few days, moving vehicles.

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Trevor Mogg
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