According to Elon Musk, SpaceX created a swarm of around a thousand satellites that is circulating about 340 miles overhead. Building the constellation puts SpaceX in a “deep chasm” of expenses. Besides, the constellation also raised concerns about potential in-space collisions as well as the impact on the astronomers’ ability to study the sky at night. However, based on the feedback of early customers, the satellites are already improving how rural communities access the internet.
Starlink internet constellation
SpaceX’s Starlink internet constellation grew to include about 1,000 active satellites. This amount of satellites is by far the largest array in orbit. As a result, SpaceX now owns around one-third of all the active satellites in the sky.
SpaceX promises to bring cheap, high-speed internet to the masses with its satellite cluster by beaming data to every corner of the globe. The company has roughly 10,000 customers, according to the company’s filing with the Federal Communications Commission on February 4. This then proves that Starlink is no longer “theoretical and experimental” as it already has a certain amount of users.
Whether or not Starlink will become a sustainable business is still a mystery. It is because Musk noted that the company “needs to pass through a deep chasm of negative cash flow over the next year or so to make Starlink financially viable.”
Low-latency, space-based internet service
SpaceX’s Starlink network is the largest attempt in history to build a low-latency, space-based internet service for the mass. Musk noted that several previous attempts to create such network have been abandoned or endured bankruptcy.
Systems that require data to travel at longer distances, such as many traditional internet satellites that orbit thousands of miles from Earth, causes longer lag times. Starlink aims to drastically reduce latency by orbiting massive networks of satellites just a few hundred miles overground.
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