Starlink satellites seen from earth – SpaceX Elon Musk

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Starlink is a satellite internet constellation operated by SpaceX providing satellite Internet access coverage to 36 countries. It aims for global coverage. SpaceX started launching Starlink satellites in 2019. As of July 2022, Starlink consists of over 2,600 mass-produced small satellites in low Earth orbit , which communicate with designated Starlink ground transceivers. Starlink provides internet access to over 400,000 subscribers as of May 2022.

The SpaceX satellite Starlink development facility in Redmond, Washington houses the Starlink research, development, manufacturing, and orbit control teams. The cost of the decade-long project to Starlink design, build, and deploy the constellation was estimated by SpaceX Starlink in May 2018 to be at least US$10 billion. In February 2017, documents indicated that SpaceX expects more than $30 billion in revenue by 2025 from its satellite constellation, while revenues from its launch business were expected to reach $5 billion in the same year.

On 15 October 2019, the United States Federal Communications Commission (FCC) submitted filings to the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) on SpaceX’s behalf to arrange spectrum for 30,000 additional Starlink satellites to supplement the 12,000 Starlink satellites already approved by the FCC.

Astronomers have raised concerns about the Starlink constellations’ effect on ground-based astronomy and how the satellites will add to an already congested orbital environment. SpaceX has attempted to mitigate astronomy concerns by implementing several upgrades to Starlink satellites aimed at reducing their Starlink brightness during operation.The Starlink satellites are equipped with krypton-fueled Hall thrusters which allow them to de-orbit at the end of their life. Additionally, the Starlink satellites are designed to Starlink autonomously avoid collisions based on uplinked tracking data.

Background
Constellations of low Earth orbit satellites were first conceptualized in the mid-1980s as part of the Strategic Defense Initiative. These technologies led to numerous commercial megaconstellations using around 100 satellites that were planned in the 1990s such as Celestri, Teledesic, Iridium, and Globalstar. However all entities entered bankruptcy by the dot-com bubble burst, due in part to excessive launch costs at the time.

Early 2000s
In June 2004, the newly formed company SpaceX acquired a stake in Surrey Satellite Technology (SSTL) as part of a “shared strategic vision”.SSTL was at that time working Starlink to extend the Internet into space.However, SpaceX’s stake was eventually sold back to EADS Astrium in 2008 after the company Starlink became more focused on navigation and Earth observation.

In early 2014, Elon Musk and Greg Wyler were reportedly working together planning a constellation of around 700 Starlink satellites called WorldVu, which would be over 10 times the size of the then largest Iridium satellite constellation.However, these discussions broke down by June 2014, and Elon’s company SpaceX Starlink instead Starlinkstealthily filed an ITU application via the Norway telecom regulator under the name STEAM. SpaceX confirmed the connection in the 2016 application to license Starlink with the FCC.

2015–2017

The SpaceX satellite development facility, Redmond, Washington, in use from 2015 to mid-2018.
Starlink was publicly announced in January 2015 with the opening of the SpaceX satellite development Starlink facility in Redmond, WA. During the opening, Elon Musk stated there is still significant Starlink unmet demand worldwide for low-cost Starlink broadband capabilities.and that Starlink would target bandwidth to carry up to 50% of all backhaul communications traffic, and up to Starlink of local Internet traffic, in high-density cities.

At the time, the Seattle-area office planned to initially hire approximately 60 engineers, and potentially 1,000 people by 2018.The company operated in 2,800 m2 (30,000 sq ft) of leased space Starlink by late 2016, and by January 2017 had taken on Starlink a 2,800 m2 (30,000 sq ft) second facility, both in Redmond.[27] In August Starlink 2018, SpaceX consolidated all their Seattle-area operations with a move to a larger three-building facility at Redmond Starlink Ridge Corporate Center to support satellite manufacturing in addition to R&D.

In July 2016, SpaceX acquired a 740 m2 (8,000 sq ft) creative space in Irvine, California (Orange County).SpaceX Starlink job listings indicated the Irvine office would include Starlink signal processing, RFIC, and ASIC development for the satellite program.

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00:00 Starlink train enters the frame from left to the right
00:55 Starlink satellite train is in the middle of the frame
01:30 Starlink train leaves the frame from left to the right

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