In the early morning darkness on May 9th 2021 at 2:42 AM EDT or 6:42 UTC SpaceX and Elon Musk achieved a new corporate milestone in re-useability with the tenth flight and landing of first stage booster B-1051.10 which is now the fleet leader during the Starlink 27 mission from SLC-40 Cape Canaveral Florida.
With the successful landing on JRTI Just Read The Instructions down range in the Atlantic Ocean and all 60 satellites deployed it was a picture perfect mission.
The very first mission for B-1051.10 was the uncrewed test flight of Crew Dragon and docking at the ISS back in March of 2019. This mornings launch occurred with a 56 day turn around from the Starlink 21 mission for this record breaking booster.
SpaceX has now completed 121 Total Launches, 83 Total Falcon 9 Landings, and 63 re-flown rockets to date. Their Starlink constellation is the largest in the world with around 1600 internet satellites orbiting the Earth.
Five hours after this launch OCISLY arrived at Port Canaveral carrying a nine time flyer B-1049.9 from the previous Starlink 25 mission on May 5th 2021 launched from LC-39A is the 2ND most flown booster in the current SpaceX fleet.
This caps a tremendous week for SpaceX with the successful 10 kilometer test flight and landing of Starship SN15 at Boca Chica Texas and this new Falcon 9 milestone of ten flights and landings. Elon Musk has stated that due to the large amount of flight proven Falcon 9 boosters in inventory the company will continue to fly them past ten flights till they fail which will make future missions very interesting.
Article and Photos Credit: Scott Schilke for spacenews.lu and space-news.es