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SpaceX plans a Memorial Day morning Falcon 9 rocket launch from Cape Canaveral, Florida

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SpaceX has confirmed they are kicking off Memorial Day with a morning Starlink launch from Cape Canaveral Space Force Launch Complex 40.

Launch is now targeted for 11:29 a.m. EDT on Monday, which is the end of the launch window. Should SpaceX not be able to launch during the allotted window, a backup opportunity is open on Tuesday, May 28, beginning at 7:30 a.m. EDT.

The next Cape Canaveral rocket launch:Is there a launch today? Upcoming SpaceX, NASA, ULA rocket launch schedule in Florida

The Falcon 9 booster set for launch on Monday morning will see its tenth flight. This particular booster launched the memorable NASA Crew-6 mission in early 2023.

Approximately eight and a half minutes after liftoff, the Falcon 9 will land on the A Shortfall of Gravitas droneship in the Atlantic Ocean.

SpaceX Starship flight update

SpaceX has confirmed they are targeting as early as Wednesday, June 5, for the fourth flight test of its Starship. While SpaceX is targeting that date, the FAA has yet to provide regulatory approval.

The fully stacked Starship will launch from Boca Chica, Texas, on a test flight. Target objectives include: achieving a landing burn and soft splashdown of the Starship Super Heavy booster in the Gulf of Mexico and achieving a controlled reentry of the Starship. Following a similar flight pattern to the third flight, SpaceX is targeting a splashdown of the Starship in the Indian Ocean.

SpaceX states that they have implemented hardware and software updates based on what was learned during the third fight. That third flight test, whichtook place March 14, was highly successful. Not only did Starship reach space and coast for over 40 minutes, but it demonstrated the opening and closing of the payload door, as well as a propellant transfer demonstration.

Once operational, Starship will transport payload and crews to Earth orbit and beyond. It will also be used by NASA as part of Artemis − ferrying astronauts down to the lunar surface from the Orion spacecraft. This Starship human landing system will be used during Artemis III, which is slated return astronauts to the Moon's surface no earlier than September 2026.

SpaceX is proceeding with plans to someday launch the Starship-Super Heavy from two sites on the Space Coast. Federal officials are now studying the two-stage mega-rocket's potential environmental impacts at NASA's Kennedy Space Center at pad 39A. Meanwhile, just to the south, SpaceX officials hope a different Starship-Super Heavy complex starts hosting launches by 2026 at adjacent Cape Canaveral Space Force Station. 

Be sure to follow the FLORIDA TODAY Space Team at floridatoday.com/space for all the latest space news from Cape Canaveral.

Brooke Edwards is a Space Reporter for Florida Today. Contact her at bedwards@floridatoday.com or on X: @brookeofstars.

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