When SpaceX launched a new Starlink fleet into orbit last week, the rocket wasn’t the only star.
Like SpaceX prepared its ground-tracking cameras for the Falcon 9 rocket’s morning launch from Florida on May 18, its operators captured a spectacular view of the near-full moon. Minutes later, Falcon 9 launched 53 Starlink satellites into space from Pad 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral.
“What you’re looking at on your screen is this incredible live shot of being captured by one of our tracking cameras in Cape Town,” SpaceX production manager Jessie Anderson said on a live broadcast. direct. “Now these are the same cameras we use to track Falcon 9 at launch, and today we get a bonus view of the moon, which looks pretty amazing right there on your screen.” Anderson said the view was captured with the help of a SpaceX launch engineer named John.
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The amazing sights of the solar system didn’t stop there.
When SpaceX launched the Starlink mission at 6:54 a.m. EDT (2254 GMT), a company photographer captured stunning views of the Falcon 9 with the sun rising.
In one photo, the Falcon 9 soars into space as a silhouette as the morning sun shines in a warm yellow-orange light. A second photo captures the moment the Falcon 9 crossed in front of the sun, seen by the photographer.
The next SpaceX rocket launch will be the company’s Transporter 5 rideshare mission carrying a variety of small satellites for customers. The earliest flight is scheduled for May 25 from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.