May 15, 10:50 ET Update: SpaceX postponed Wednesday's launch just before going out because of the strong winds above the launch site. The company will try again on Thursday, May 16th.
Original Story: Tonight, SpaceX will try to initiate its ambitious internet-of-space initiative of the Starlink name, by launching the first 60 satellite production of nearly 12,000 spacecraft designed to low orbit overhead. the Earth. These opening searchers don't have all the capabilities that the final satellites are supposed to have, but their launch will boost Starlink – and it should help SpaceX learn what it's like. take to implement a large crop of vehicles in space.
“This was one of the hardest engineering projects I've ever seen, and it's been very well implemented,” said Spacex CEO Elon Musk during a conference call.
Starlink is one of SpaceX's most breathtaking projects. SpaceX requirements place two groups of satellites to orbit: one batch of 4,409 satellites that will operate between 340 miles (550 kilometers) and 823 miles (1,325 kilometers) up. And then there is a second batch of 7,518 satellites that would fly slightly lower, between 208 miles (335 kilometers) and 214 miles (346 kilometers) in height. That is a total of 11,927 satellites all swelling over the Earth, providing internet connectivity to up to a million surface terminals on the surface.
Ultimately, the goal is to provide global internet coverage of space, with very short slowing times in the signal – something satellites that are currently drawing internet can not achieve. Most satellites provide coverage of the internet from the space in much higher orbits that are called our geo-orbit – a path of about 22,000 t a mile above the equator. The problem with these satellites, however, is that it takes a long time to get their data, since signals have to travel thousands of miles through the space and back. That is why SpaceX and other aerospace companies offer constellations in much lower orbits, to reduce this denial issue.
When you move to lower orbits, you need a lot more satellites to provide full coverage to the Earth, which is why SpaceX and others offer new constellations in the hundreds and; r thousands. Currently, there are nearly 2,000 active satellites in orbit, but satellite internet initiatives such as SpaceX, OneWeb, and more could increase that number by four times. He has led many aerospace experts to wonder how this space could lock the Earth around, and raise concerns about the risks of air crash and space debris. To reduce the possibility of creating residues, SpaceX has proposed to move some of its satellites to reduce orbit, and also intends to dispose of these satellites over water, where they will burn almost completely. completely in the atmosphere and not a threat to people or property below.
However, Musk argues that the chance of collisions in space will be small. “The space junk thing – we don't want to depreciate it or not take it seriously, because we're certainly taking it seriously – but it's not overcrowded there,” says Musk. “It's very rare.”
If the debris risks are addressed, the benefits of these constellations could be enormous especially in rural and remote areas. “This would provide connectivity for people who have no connectivity today, or where it is extremely expensive and unreliable,” said Musk. He also said that this system would “provide a competitive choice” for people in more developed areas who might want another option for their internet provider.
The Federal Communications Commission has already granted SpaceX permission to launch its almost 12,000-satellite integrity. SpaceX launched its first two test satellites, TinTin A and TinTin B, in February 2018, and the company now has about six years to launch half the full precedent to use its license with the County Council in full.
Tonight's launch will get SpaceX to start reaching its deadline, although the satellites that rise on this mission do not boast all the capabilities of the final searchers. They have radio antennas to communicate with the Earth, fans who can drive them through the space, as well as star trackers that will help the East and steer. SpaceX claims that the satellites can even trace other trash remains in orbit using RAF tracking data and avoid running objects. But these first satellites do not have a way of communicating with each other, which will be necessary in the future. As the satellites will magnify over the Earth, they will need to trade attention whenever they move to a new piece of face, and that will require satellite-to-air communication. satellite.
However, Musk said that these first satellites can go around this issue by bouncing signals off gates on the ground which can then bounce signals to another satellite. “This way we can have connectivity without using inter-learning links,” says Musk. “The system can still have global connectivity,” perhaps apart from some areas where you would need a gateway to reverse rear signals over the sea. Musk says that this answer will only be needed for the first few batches of production satellites. “Our version is one,” says Musk. “As we reach version two and three, we expect to add internal satellite links.”
Over the weekend, Elon Musk, CEO of SpaceX, showed a picture of each of the 60 satellites that had stacked on top of each other inside the Falcon 9 rocket penny that will take them to orbit. Our tight fit inside the vehicle, and each satellite weighs about 500 pounds (227 kilograms) each, making it the heaviest wage loads that SpaceX has carried t into space, pressing in for 18.5 tonnes.
SpaceX plans to continue launching batches of 60 in the coming years, with the aim of launching between 1,000 and 2,000 satellites a year, according to Musk. Musk says the company can receive full coverage after about 24 launches, but will continue to add satellites as more customers choose to join the system. “There is no need for nearly 10,000 satellites to be effective,” he said.
The plan also revolves around SpaceX introducing ground stations and user terminals that accept the signals from the satellites. Musk described the individual user terminals as pizza-shaped antennas pointing up in the air and finding the nearest satellite to connect with. “You won't even notice the fact that it changes between satellites,” says Musk. “There is a lot of advanced technology here, all the way down to chip level.”
And if everything goes on, Musk provides SpaceX to get a big piece of money, which could be used to fund the company's longer-term projects, such as developing a huge new rocket from the name Starship. “Total internet connectivity revenue in the world is around a trillion dollars, and we think we might be able to get around 3 per cent of that, or maybe 5 per cent,” he said.
But first, SpaceX must get started. Falcon 9 which will take 60 satellites tonight to orbit is one that SpaceX has to use a few times from the front. The satellite Telstar 18 VANTAGE flew back in September 2018, and then flew for the second time in January this year, taking a group of satellites in orbit for Iridium. Now he will fly tonight from Cape Canaveral Force Station in Florida, and after going out, he will try to land on a SpaceX drone ship in the Atlantic Ocean. This means that this vehicle could fly for the fourth time if it is stuck at the destination.
Takeoff is scheduled for 10:30 PM ET, and SpaceX has a launch window that lasts for an hour and a half more, so the company can dissolve until 12:00. About an hour after takeoff, SpaceX will use the satellites in orbit by rotating the rocket and using the inertia satellites to spread it to orbit. SpaceX plans to show the whole mission from the start to the end, with a live broadcast starting about 15 minutes before its launch. Look back to watch what should be an interesting satellite material.