ULA’s first launch of 2022 to debut unflown variant of Atlas 5 rocket

United Launch Alliance’s Atlas 5 rocket has flown in 10 different configurations over 90 missions since 2002, each version optimized to haul satellites of a certain size and mass into space. The only variant of the Atlas 5 rocket yet to fly is set to launch Friday afternoon from Cape Canaveral with a pair of satellites to help the U.S. military keep track of traffic in geosynchronous orbit.

SpaceX launches 2,000th Starlink satellite

A package of 49 Starlink satellites that rode a Falcon 9 rocket into orbit Tuesday night from Florida included the 2,000th spacecraft to launch into SpaceX’s broadband internet network.

Live coverage: SpaceX plans prime time launch of Falcon 9 rocket Monday night

Keeping up a rapid-fire launch cadence to begin 2022, SpaceX is gearing up to launch another Falcon 9 rocket Monday night from Kennedy Space Center in Florida with 49 Starlink internet satellites. Liftoff from pad 39A is set for 7:26 p.m. EST Monday (0026 GMT Tuesday). SpaceX intends to land the first stage booster on a drone ship north of the Bahamas.

Virgin Orbit celebrates third successful launch in a row

Virgin Orbit delivered seven small CubeSats for NASA, the U.S. military, Spire, and the Polish company SatRevolution into orbit Thursday with its air-launched rocket after release from a jumbo jet off the coast of California.

Live coverage: Virgin Orbit’s air-launched rocket to deploy seven smallsats into orbit

Virgin Orbit aims to build on two successful small satellite launches last year with another flight of its air-dropped rocket Thursday off the coast of California, this time carrying seven mini-payloads into low Earth orbit. The company’s Boeing 747 carrier aircraft is set to depart Mojave Air and Space Port as soon as 1 p.m. PST (4 p.m. EST; 2100 GMT) to begin the hour-long cruise to the rocket release point.

Live coverage: SpaceX ready to launch 105 satellites today

SpaceX is scheduled to launch a Falcon 9 rocket Thursday from Cape Canaveral with 105 satellites ranging from the size of a soda can to a washing machine. Liftoff is timed for 10:25 a.m. EST (1525 GMT), and the Falcon 9’s first stage booster will return to Florida’s Space Coast for a propulsive landing about eight-and-a-half minutes later.