The billionaire tech entrepreneur, and owner of SpaceX, Elon Musk, plans to dominate every corner of the globe with internet access.
The project is made possible through the installation of Starlink Trains, which had already seized the attention of many. The Starlink train is said to have 30 satellites and is currently visible from the International Space Station and several places in Europe and the US.
Stargazers, astronomers, and curious spectators have been seeing the flaring lights move from one side to another. Amid the intention of Elon Musk to provide global internet access, the project has already raised serious controversies. SpaceX’s installation of 360 Starlink satellites already seems massive, however, Elon Musk will be adding more to the collection.
Controversies surrounding Starlink satellites
Since the initial orbit, a lot of people have raised their concerns over the project, and its future impact on the world. On the side of the astronomers, Starlink will cause problems during scientific observations.
To make their observations accurate and reliable, astronomers rely on dark skies. There are already 3,000 satellites in orbit. Moreover, with Starlink adding to the initial number of satellites, astronomical studies would be immensely affected.
— PVUK (@PrepperVetUK) April 22, 2020
Also, astrophotographers have also voiced out their concern over the installation of Starlink. It appears that the satellites damage the long exposure of the night sky.
The increase in Starlink installation poses a bigger threat according to several concerned environmentalists. A collision of satellites in the earth’s orbit is possible since it already happened when Russia and US satellites collided.
Once the satellites collide with one another, debris from the explosion may reach and damage the neighbouring satellites, thus creating a chain of reaction. The massive explosion may result in the earth’s orbit being unusable.
Elon Musk goes massive with 42,000 satellites in the making
Elon Musk is currently working on upgrading his project to put up 42,000 satellites in the earth’s orbit. Each satellite is said to weigh 225 kilograms, at the same time, similar to the size of a flattened car. Solar panels are used to reflect sunlight.
The first stage rocket booster supporting this mission previously supported Crew Dragon’s first flight to the @space_station, launch of the RADARSAT Constellation Mission, and the fourth Starlink mission pic.twitter.com/4IMk3kTTaG
— SpaceX (@SpaceX) April 17, 2020
Elon Musk says Starlink will have zero impact on astronomy
In disagreement, Musk believes that Starlink will cause no problem with the astronomy community. SpaceX made several adjustments to the bright lights which were also raised by astronomers.
Experiments are being done to produce darkened satellites instead of the white ones. Furthermore, Musk also assured the astronomical community that SpaceX will be finding ways to address the problems.
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