Starlink Project

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    • According to a recent report published by The Economist, Starlink has become an essential part of Ukraine’s bid to fight the Russian invasion.

    More about the news

    • SpaceX’s Starlink is helping Ukraine in the fight against Russia by providing thousands of Starlink satellite internet devices to Ukraine without any charge.
    • It also emerged as a crucial communication tool for Ukraine’s armed forces because their own mediums of communication were compromised by Russian hackers.

    More about the Starlink Project

    • About:
      • Starlink is a satellite constellation that comprises thousands of small satellites in low-Earth orbit. 
      • SpaceX first began sending them into space in 2019.
      • Currently, there are more than 3,000 of these satellites that send internet signals to designated ground receivers.
    • Required infrastructure:
      • Unlike traditional internet providers, Starlink doesn’t require any ground infrastructure. 
      • One just needs to have a small satellite dish or a receiver device to access high-speed internet, much like satellite TV.
    • Accessibility:
      • The company also has a mobile application for Android and iOS that uses augmented reality to help customers choose the ideal location and position for their receivers.
    • Expansion plans:
      • According to a report published by DW, SpaceX plans to “expand the network to up to 12,000 satellites, with a possible extension to 42,000”.
    • Issues of space debris:
      • The satellites of Starlink work only for five years and once they are dysfunctional, they remain in space and contribute to space debris.
      • SpaceX’s ambitious plan of launching 42,000 more satellites in the next few years might lead to overcrowding in our orbit, which in turn would impede astronomers from making observations from Earth.
    • Accessibility in combat environment:
      • According to the report, what makes Starlink easily accessible even in the combat environment is the fact that the dishes and terminals used for providing the internet are portable and can be rigged to run off a car battery
        • In an area which has an unreliable supply of electricity, this is a huge advantage.
      • Apart from this, because Starlink consists of thousands of satellites that orbit around the Earth and aren’t too far from the ground, they are able to provide high bandwidth without many glitches.
        • This has also made drone warfare much easier.

    Source: TH