SpaceX Starlink internet service gearing up for public beta soon, says Elon Musk

After a series of delays due to unfavourable weather conditions, the latest SpaceX Starlink mission launched last week on Tuesday, Oct. 6, at 7:29 a.m. PDT. This added 60 more satellites that are intended to beam down high-speed internet from space. This brings the total number of low-Earth orbit (LEO) satellites from the privately-owned space firm to almost 800. It will not end just yet, as more are planned to go up in the future. The service is expected to go online for its beta testing phase soon.



a sign lit up at night: SpaceX Starlink satellites pass over Leiden


© Photo: Marco Langbroek / Marco Langbroek
SpaceX Starlink satellites pass over Leiden

Elon Musk said, “Once these satellites reach their target position, we will be able to roll out a fairly wide public beta in northern US and hopefully southern Canada.” This is just the initial phase, as SpaceX plans to increase coverage moving forward to eventually provide a constellation that can deliver reliable broadband internet services across the globe, reports ZDNet. He added: “Other countries to follow as soon as we receive regulatory approval.”

Perhaps the most recent test of its capabilities was last month in the wake of the devastating wildfires that destroyed local communications infrastructure. Last month, the residents and emergency responders in the town of Malden in Washington were able to use Wi-Fi services provided by SpaceX Starlink satellites at the time. Musk noted that it was a special case scenario wherein it was able to help folks who needed internet connectivity given the situation.

Originally, the target speeds were set at approximately 100 megabits per second. Nevertheless, this is expected to improve as the satellite constellation grows later on. The official website states: “With performance that far surpasses that of traditional satellite internet, and a global network unbounded by ground infrastructure limitations, Starlink will deliver high-speed

SpaceX Starlink Internet ‘Catapulted Us Into the 21st Century,’ Native American Tribe Says

A Native American tribe in a remote part of Washington has been “catapulted into the 21st century” after getting SpaceX’s Starlink internet.

SpaceX Is Trying To Launch 60 Starlink Internet Satellites Into Space

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The Hoh Tribe, which is based on the Pacific coast, roughly 23 miles south of the town of Forks, said on Twitter this week it was now receiving a high-speed connection from the constellation of satellites blasted into orbit by Elon Musk’s company.

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“What a difference high-speed internet can make. Our children can participate in remote learning, residents can access healthcare. We felt like we’d been paddling up-river with a spoon… SpaceX Starlink made it happen overnight,” it tweeted Wednesday.

Starlink is an ongoing SpaceX project creating a global network of satellites capable of beaming broadband internet to areas with unreliable or unavailable access.

Earlier this week, as the company shot 60 more satellites into space onboard a Falcon 9 rocket, Musk teased tests in the U.S. and Canada were closer than ever. The company said “near-global coverage of the populated world” could be reached by 2021.

While not for the wider public, some trials have begun. Responding to the Hoh tribe’s tweet this week, the billionaire SpaceX boss wrote back: “You’re most welcome!”

It remains unclear what speed the tribe was now receiving from Starlink, but it revealed in a separate tweet that its previous capacity had been between 0.3 and 0.7 megabits per second (Mbps). For context, SpaceX has previously said its Starlink tests showed “super low latency and download speeds greater than 100 Mbps,” which is enough to “stream multiple HD movies at once and still have bandwidth to spare.”

The director of the Washington Department of

SpaceX, L3Harris win missile-warning satellite contracts from US military

The U.S. military has picked SpaceX and L3Harris Technologies to build up a new missile-warning satellite system in space.

In separate contracts, SpaceX and L3Harris will each provide four infrared satellites devoted to missile tracking as part of the larger National Defense Space Architecture program. The contract, awarded by the Department of Defense’s Space Development Agency (SDA), gives $193.5 million to L3Harris and $149 million to SpaceX. The satellites should be ready by the end of fiscal year 2022. 

“The satellites will be able to provide missile tracking data for hypersonic glide vehicles, and the next generation of advanced missile threats,” Derek Tournear, SDA director, said in a statement.

Related: What is a ballistic missile and how does it work?

SpaceX, originally a launch provider using its Falcon rockets, has entered the satellite construction market with its Starlink constellation of internet satellites. The company has launched more than 700 of the satellites in the last two years  and manufactures them at a facility in Seattle, Washington. L3Harris is an aerospace company with a history of military contracts for aircraft and missile defense. 

The new missile-tracking satellites will provide information to a separate set of 28 “transport satellites,” which will take offensive action based on what the missile trackers find. Construction for the 28 transport satellites will be awarded in a separate solicitation, SDA added.

“The transport satellites are the backbone of the National Defense Space Architecture,” Tournear said. “They take data from multiple tracking systems, fuse those, and are able to calculate a fire control solution, and then the transport satellites will be able to send those data down directly to a weapons platform via a tactical data link, or some other means.”

Taken together, the transport satellites and the missile-tracking satellites will be the first “tranche”

SpaceX launches 60 more Starlink satellites Tuesday, breaks scrub streak

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A Falcon 9 blasts off on Aug. 30.


SpaceX

Space fans have been starved for action lately, with three big missions repeatedly scrubbed and postponed over the past several weeks. But early on Tuesday, SpaceX finally ended the streak that became known as #Scrubtober (and previously known as #Scrubtember) with the launch and deployment of 60 new Starlink satellites via a Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral. 

This Starlink mission was the Falcon 9 rocket booster’s third flight overall. It sent astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken to orbit in May and then launched a South Korean satellite in July. So far, SpaceX has managed to launch and land the same rocket up to six times

The Falcon 9 first stage landed again on the droneship Of Course I Still Love You in the Atlantic about 8.5 minutes after launch Tuesday. SpaceX also reports that it caught at least one of the fairing halves that flew on two previous missions.

The launch, originally scheduled for September, was postponed multiple times, including twice last week due to heavy clouds in one case and an aberrant ground sensor reading in another. Monday’s scrub was yet again blamed on weather. 

Another SpaceX mission to launch a US Space Force GPS satellite has also been scrubbed multiple times, most recently on Friday. Meanwhile, United Launch Alliance has been trying to get one of its Delta IV Heavy rockets off the ground since August, but has been delayed at least six times. 

Musk expressed his clear frustration with the series of scrubs last week.

“We will need to make a lot of improvements to have a chance of completing 48 launches next year!” Musk tweeted Friday.

SpaceX launches 60 more Starlink satellites, breaks ‘Scrubtober’ delay streak

egxpl5rucaatfpr

A Falcon 9 blasts off on Aug. 30.


SpaceX

Space fans have been starved for action lately, with three big missions repeatedly scrubbed and postponed over the past several weeks. But early on Tuesday, SpaceX finally ended the streak that became known as #Scrubtober (the hashtag previously known as #Scrubtember) with the launch and deployment of 60 new Starlink satellites via a Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral. 

This Starlink mission was the Falcon 9 rocket booster’s third flight overall. It sent astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken to orbit in May and then launched a South Korean satellite in July. So far, SpaceX has managed to launch and land the same rocket up to six times

The Falcon 9 first stage landed again on the droneship Of Course I Still Love You in the Atlantic about 8.5 minutes after launch Tuesday. SpaceX also reports that it caught at least one of the fairing halves that flew on two previous missions.

The launch, originally scheduled for September, was postponed multiple times, including twice last week due to heavy clouds in one case and an aberrant ground sensor reading in another. Monday’s scrub was yet again blamed on weather. 

Another SpaceX mission to launch a US Space Force GPS satellite has also been scrubbed multiple times, most recently on Friday. Meanwhile, United Launch Alliance has been trying to get one of its Delta IV Heavy rockets off the ground since August, but has been delayed at least six times. 

Musk expressed his clear frustration with the series of scrubs last week.

“We will need to make a lot of improvements to have a chance of completing 48 launches next year!” Musk tweeted Friday.