SpaceX Orbits 60 Starlink Satellites in One Launch

This is it.

They crammed sixty communications satellites into the nose of one rocket. That’s gotta be a record right? It’s not, but that’s ok.

At deployment of those spacecraft, SpaceX took the lead in the hot new industry of low Earth orbiting satellite Internet.

These satellites, each 500 pounds and about the size of a minibar, comprise the first launch of many to fill low-Earth orbit with flying Internet access points to serve customers all over the world. They plan to orbit 12,000 at a mix of 210 miles, 340 miles, and 710 miles up to become the fastest, cheapest, most widespread Internet Service Provider in history.

Though the release technique of those satellites that we all witnessed was over-hyped and anticlimactic, understand that SpaceX built those 60 experimental satellites in about a year without using mass production. They intend to mass produce and fly 60 of those every month. This launch boosted the total number of active satellites orbiting Earth to more than 2000, but at that rate they will soon own and operate the majority of functioning satellites in the world. I am quite sure that this spacecraft manufacture rate is also well beyond that of any other known producer…directly and severely disrupting yet another industry.

The 60 Starlink satellites on the payload adapter ready for launch.

Now I’ve frequently predicted here in the past that inexpensive launch services, instigated and lead by SpaceX, will transform that and many other markets as doing business in space becomes more common and affordable, reverse the United States trade deficit, and trigger a worldwide tech revolution that will touch everyone in one way or another by about 2022. However, if all this goes according to plan they will also have 2160 operational satellites orbiting the Earth, serving high-speed Internet to every corner of it, by around July of that same year. Elon was indicating that he can start providing this service to remote areas when that number reaches just a few hundred…like sometime next year.

These spacecraft can also detect and avoid space debris and will later have the ability to communicate amongst themselves using lasers and completely burn up on reentry. SpaceX intends to build satellites for other companies in the future based on this design and send a modification of them to Mars and other places.

The other competitors in that industry had better get moving.

The Starlink payload backdropped by Earth.

~ by Bill Housley on May 15, 2019.

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