Published on October 23rd, 2019 | by Emergent Enterprise0
SpaceX Aims to Provide Internet Coverage with Starlink Constellation as Soon as Mid-2020
Many emergent technologies have a basic critical requirement: internet access. A post at The Verge by Loren Gush gives an update on the Starlink initiative, the effort by SpaceX to provide broadband internet to, well, everywhere. When functional, Starlink could provide much needed data and content to tech solutions like AR/VR and IoT to locations that have little or no web access. Now companies can start thinking of using these technologies in places that seemed out of reach.
SpaceX says it plans to begin offering broadband services to customers with its massive internet-from-space initiative, known as Starlink, as early as mid-2020, SpaceNews reports. The company needs to complete six to eight launches, with 60 satellites per ride, in order to get the service up and running, SpaceX president and COO Gwynne Shotwell told reporters during a media roundtable in Washington, DC.
Starlink is SpaceX’s proposed constellation of thousands of satellites, which are designed to orbit at low altitudes above the Earth and beam internet coverage to the surface below. SpaceX has so far secured licensing from the Federal Communications Commission to launch nearly 12,000 satellites into orbit. And just last week, the company submitted another request to an international regulator, the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), asking for radio frequencies to communicate with an additional 30,000 Starlink satellites. That means the company wants the ability to launch an estimated 42,000 satellites into orbit.
“As demand escalates for fast, reliable internet around the world, especially for those where connectivity is non-existent, too expensive or unreliable, SpaceX is taking steps to responsibly scale Starlink’s total network capacity and data density to meet the growth in users’ anticipated needs,” a company spokesperson said in a statement in reference to the new ITU filing.