SpaceX Starlink Project and It’s Future

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NASA

Picture of Earth showing the curve of the planet.

Dominic Fightmaster, Tech Writer

SpaceX has been working on a project they call Starlink. Starlink is a group of small satellites that are being launched into space. They will be in a mega constellation around the world. They will provide satellite internet access to areas that don’t really get it. Satellite internet is internet that is provided through communications satellites. They first launched on February 22, 2018, and as of their most recent launch, they have put up 60 more satellites.

What can we expect from Starlink in the future? They plan to launch 12,000 satellites into space but could launch an extra 42,000 if they want. There are currently 302 satellites that have been launched. These satellites, as said, will provide satellite internet access to areas across the globe. Since it is closer to the surface of the Earth, it will be able to send information faster to any point on the Earth. 

Although, this could cause some problems in the future. The number of satellites in orbit will leave the night sky full of these satellites. This would make it hard for observers to study space, but SpaceX is trying to find a way to prevent this. In one of their recent launches, they painted one of the satellites with a black color to help make it less visible. If this proves to be effective we may see the other’s painted in a similar way. 

So let’s talk about the satellites. Each one weighs around 500 lbs and is about the size of a table. They need around 400 satellites to have at least minimal internet coverage. After that, they will need around 800 to get moderate internet coverage. SpaceX and the U.S. military have a contract together to demonstrate how it connects to aircraft.

They are developing terminals that will allow people to connect to the Starlink network. Once SpaceX finds a good way to keep the satellites from intervening with space observations, we will see them not having many problems. Starlink has a lot of potentials and could provide a lot of people with internet access, though we still need to wait for them to launch all of the satellites. The future for Starlink is very bright and could lead to many great things. Some little problems may arise, but they will work out the problems and make Starlink out of this world.