U.S. officials have approved Boeing to launch its satellite galaxy program to provide Internet access from space. There are two more projects: “Starling” from SpaceX and “Kuiper” from Amazon.
Strange line of glowing dots moving in the sky like wildfire at night. Launched by private US space agency SpaceX, the “Starling” satellite train is set to reach millions of Europeans in June 2020. These satellites, which travel rapidly at low altitudes, were observed several times during the night in 2020. 2021.
As the other two companies enter this space, it will soon become commonplace to see satellite trains above our heads: Boeing and Amazon with its “Kuiper” program. Goal: To make the Internet available anywhere on earth.
The first “Starling” satellites were launched in 2019 by Elon Musk-owned US space agency SpaceX. There are already more than 1400. Thus 53 new satellites were launched from Cape Canaveral in Florida on Saturday, November 13th.
The satellites are orbiting the Earth at an altitude of 540 to 570 km. Eventually SpaceX intends to launch a set of several tens of thousands of satellites. SpaceX wants a network dense enough in low Earth orbit to provide high performance and uninterrupted Internet access. The operator guarantees download speeds of 100 and 200 Mbit / s and a delay of 20 ms.
“Starlink” already offers a subscription fee of 99 499 for equipment (terminal and connection cables) and 99 99 per month on its website. Marketing is scheduled for next September.
Amazon also has its own satellite galaxy. Boeing and Lockheed Martin’s ULA (United Launch Alliance) signed a major contract last April to launch nine Atlas V rockets. Two satellite prototypes will be launched soon.
The “Kuiper” program aims to launch 3236 satellites in low orbit at altitudes of 590, 610 and 630 km. Amazon has released the prototype terminal “Starling” and “antennas are smaller and lighter than traditional antennas” to reduce its production costs. Amazon guarantees speeds of up to 400 Mb / s.
No release date has been released yet. 2029 is mentioned.
Boeing received a license from US authorities in early November. The American aircraft manufacturer plans to serve the United States first and then the rest of the world. 147 satellites have been approved: 132 can be placed at an altitude of about 1000 km and 15 at 27,000 to 44,000 km. “As the demand for satellite communications increases, diversity in different orbits and frequencies will be required,” Boeing said in a statement. No release date has been made public.
Astronomers are worried
Astronomers are worried that the first trains of the “Starlink” satellites will be connected by the “Kuiper” and Boeing satellites in a few years. In ten years, there may be more than 50,000 satellites in the sky compared to 2,500 satellites today. “It will be very embarrassing for scientific work and photography because we will end up with more and more paths,” condemned Nicolas Piever, an astrophysicist at the Paris Laboratory. “We are already ashamed of the lights on the ground.” A petition accusing “Starling” of “destroying the sky observation for humanity” has collected more than 23,000 signatures. “Starling” plans to add a variety of sunlight to it. Satellites …