Elon Musk-led SpaceX is all set to blastoff of a Falcon 9 rocket carrying the first 60 satellites for his new Starlink internet service. The launches are wonderful not only due to the extensive rocket taking off, but also since two boosters fly back to Cape Canaveral, making double sonic booms and a visual spectacle. Additionally, upper level winds are expected to be a little calmer.
If SpaceX is successful Thursday, the launch would mark the largest test yet for any company attempting such a project.
The project is still in its early days. This was reported by Musk on Twitter. The only feature they lack is the ability to communicate with each other while in orbit.
Starlink isn't the only megaconstellation project in the works, however.
An illustration of Starlink, a fleet or constellation of internet-providing satellites designed by SpaceX. It will take 12 launches before the company can provide coverage for a significant portion of the world's population, according to Musk. The dismissals followed disagreements between Musk and others over the pace at which the satellites were being developed and tested, the news service said in October.
This will be the second Starlink launch SpaceX has performed.More news: Farmer amputates leg with knife to escape auger
More news: China trade war could make iPhones 3% more costly
More news: Russia Intends to Rebuild Relations with US, Putin Lauds 'objective' Mueller Report
According to a filing last month with the Securities and Exchange Commission, SpaceX sought to raise $400 million, but had only raised $44 million as of the filing, required 15 days after the round opens. That leaves extremely rural or impoverished communities without affordable access.
He's far from alone in seeing dollar signs pushing a satellite-based internet service.
SpaceX is one of several companies that wants to overhaul internet delivery.
Musk said Starlink user terminals will also use phased array, electronically steered antennas - a technology widely considered essential for the success of low-Earth-orbit broadband constellations. Starlink bases on utilizing low earth orbit (LEO) satellites.
In a statement, Amazon said that its program, known as Project Kuiper, is created to bring broadband to "unserved and underserved communities around the world". He met with members of the SpaceFlight Insider team during the flight of a United Launch Alliance Atlas V 551 rocket with the MUOS-4 satellite.
Updates, 5:45 p.m. PT: Adds SpaceX says weather conditions are favorable; 7:50 p.m.: Adds SpaceX has scrubbed Wednesday's launch; 3:28 p.m., May 16: Adds launch details, links to webcast; 6:45 p.m.: Adds SpaceX scrubs again.