SpaceX sets a new record for reusability

On July 10, SpaceX launched another Falcon 9 rocket, which launched a batch of 22 Starlink satellites into orbit. Despite the routine nature of the mission, it was marked by an important achievement: the company managed to update its own record of reusability.

Launch of Falcon 9 with a new batch of Starlink satellites. Source: SpaceX

The fact is that to launch the satellites, SpaceX used the first stage with the tail number B1058. The last flight was already the sixteenth for it. This became a new record for the number of re-use of the first stage of the rocket.

For the first time, B1058 flew in May 2020, sending the first crewed Crew Dragon spacecraft to the ISS. As part of that mission, the red NASA logo (also known as the worm) was applied to the stage, which was used by the organization from 1975 to 1992. Since then, B1058 has made 15 more flights. Basically, the stage was used for the output of Starlink batches, and it also sent several supply spacecraft to the ISS.The B1058 is still decorated with the NASA logo, which, however, has become very blackened due to constant flights.

The record flight of the B1058 took place on July 10. After separation, the stage returned to the Earth’s atmosphere and made a successful landing on a barge in the Atlantic Ocean. In the near future, it will be delivered to the SpaceX base, after which it will be examined and prepared for a new launch. The company managed to pick up the wings of the Falcon 9 fairing; they were also reused.

NASA logo on stage B1058. Source: Jenny Hautmann

Recall that the basic goal of SpaceX was to use the first stages of the Falcon 9 at least ten times. At the moment, eight stages have already managed to surpass this indicator. In the spring of 2023, SpaceX representatives announced that they intended to increase the number of re-uses of the Falcon 9 to twenty times.

Follow us on Twitter to get the most interesting space news in time