CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. - The first SpaceX launch of 2023 is now in the books.
On Tuesday, the space company launched a Falcon 9 rocket representing its sixth dedicated smallsat rideshare mission, dubbed Transporter-6. SpaceX's rideshare program will allow smaller satellites — some as small as a mailbox – to be sent into orbit at a lower-cost option for private companies and public institutions.
The Transporter-6 mission launched into low-Earth orbit at 9:56 a.m. ET from Space Launch Complex 40 (SLC-40) at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida.
SpaceX says there is 114 payloads on this flight, including CubeSats, microsats, picosats, and orbital transfer vehicles carrying spacecraft to be deployed at a later time.
The first stage booster supporting this mission previously launched GPS III-3, Turksat 5A, Transporter-2, Intelsat G-33/G-34, and 10 Starlink missions.
SpaceX completed 61 launches in 2022, which it says nearly doubled a record of 31 launches set in 2021.
"On average, SpaceX launched every 6 days from one of our three sites with 92% of missions completed with flight-proven first stage rocket boosters, and Falcon 9 now holds the world record for most launches of a single vehicle type in a single year," the company tweeted on Friday following its last launch of the year.