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SpaceX breaks 2022 launch record

September 5, 2023

SpaceX has passed its 2022 record of 61 launches of its Falcon 9 rockets. September 3rd saw that record easily broken and another flight added to the 57 Falcon 9’s launched, plus three Falcon ‘Heavy’ rockets and one Starship during the year to date.

SpaceX lofted its 62nd mission this year on September 3rd (at 10.47pm Florida time) and added another 21 Starlink broadband craft to its orbital roster.

But Elon Musk is expecting an even greater frequency for the rest of this year and into 2024. In a Tweet, Musk said that for this year his SpaceX team were aiming for 10 flights a month by year-end, and 12 per month in 2024.

That’s an impressive ambition and could easily develop into 130-140 flights next year and potentially 100 flights overall this year.

Musk added: “SpaceX has delivered ~80 per cent of all Earth payload mass to orbit in 2023. China is ~10 per cent and the rest of world other ~10 per cent.”

Europe barely figures.

The mix of launches (to date) show that SpaceX carried 26 commercial or military cargoes (non-Starlink flights) and an overall total of some 710,700 kgs of cargo. To put this achievement in context, the previous launch record was held by Russia’s Soyuz-U rocket which had 47 launches during 1979.

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