Transporter-4 (Falcon 9)
1 April 2022
Space Launch Complex 40
Cape Canaveral Space Force Station

A SpaceX Falcon 9 launched the Transporter-4 mission, SpaceX’s fourth dedicated smallsat rideshare mission taking to orbit 40 spacecraft, including CubeSats, microsats, picosats, non-deploying hosted payloads, and an orbital transfer vehicle carrying spacecraft to be deployed at a later time. The rocket launched from Space Launch Complex-40 (SLC-40) at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station at 12:24 p.m. on 1 April 2022. Falcon 9 flew on a southern trajectory along Florida’s eastern coast. Following stage separation the Falcon 9’s first stage landed on the Just Read the Instructions droneship stationed in the Atlantic Ocean.

Falcon 9’s first stage booster previously launched Crew-1, Crew-2, SXM-8, CRS-23, IXPE, and one Starlink mission.

The launch viewing was clouded-out at my location so I have compiled images from the SpaceX web telecast featuring key points of the launch and deployment of the satellites.
Looking down the length of the first stage toward the main engine plume with the Earth in the background. Note the grid fins retracted against the body of the rocket.
From inside the interstage, the left image is looking up toward the second stage where the first and second stages connect. The right image is looking down toward the first stage showing the second stage Merlin vacuum engine.
Stage separation. The second stage can be seen pulling away from the first stage at left while in the right image the second stage engine bell partially blocks the view of the retreating first stage.
The view inside showing one of the two fairings and part of the payload.
Fairing separation. The two fairings will parachute into the ocean to be recovered and reused.
The left image shows the grid fins on the first stage have deployed. They will assist in aerodynamic control once the stage reenters the atmosphere. The Bahamas can be seen far below. The right image shows the second stage powering its way to orbit.
The left image shows the first stage entry burn to slow the booster as it reenters the atmosphere.
The Just Read The Instructions droneship moments before the first stage landing.
The first stage lands on the droneship.
Another successful landing!
Shutdown of the second stage engine. The second stage entered a coast phase with irregular firings of the engine as needed to place it in the proper position to release the various satellites.
Preparing to release a satellite during one of the coast phases.
A satellite is released into orbit!
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