Launch

2024 Q2 Orbital Launch Attempts by Country

With Q2 in the rearview mirror, one thing is clear—global launch attempts are on the rise.

US launch: SpaceX accounted for 37 out of the 39 US orbital launch attempts in Q2. ULA rounded out the quarter with two missions, both of which held historical significance: the final Delta IV Heavy flight and the first crewed Starliner mission. 

SpaceX: SpaceX flew 36 Falcon missions in Q2, bringing its first half total to 67 launches: January (10), February (9), March (12), April (12), May (14), June (10). 

The company aims to launch Falcon 148 times this year, which will require SpaceX to average 13.5 launches per month for the rest of the year. 

Starlink-dedicated missions are taking up a larger portion of SpaceX’s overall flights, with 75% of Falcon flights in Q2 going to build the constellation.

Rocket Lab: Rocket Lab launched four times out of Mahia, New Zealand. Its last flight of the quarter was its 50th all-time Electron launch, setting the record for the fastest commercial launch vehicle to reach the milestone.

China launch: China logged 16 orbital launch attempts in Q2 2024.

  • Notable missions include the successful Chang’e 6 lunar lander and the deployment of the jointly developed French-Chinese SVOM telescope to study gamma-ray bursts.
  • Chinese launch startup Galactic Energy accounted for three of the 16 launches. The company flew all three missions within a nine-day span, underscoring the growing capability of the commercial sector. 

It was a quiet Q2 for just about everyone else. North Korea attempted to deploy a recon sat, but it failed catastrophically in a midflight ka-boom. Europe once again put up a goose egg for the quarter as it targets an Ariane 6 maiden launch for tomorrow. 

1H 2024: There were 126 total global orbital launches in the first half of 2024:

  • US: 73
  • China: 30
  • Russia: 8
  • New Zealand: 7
  • Japan: 3
  • Iran: 2
  • India: 2
  • North Korea: 1
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