SpaceX is ramping up for the implementation of Starlink v. 2.0. The new and improved Starlink will vastly expand coverage across the globe and improve internet access for RVers in remote locations.
“Starlink 2.0 is an order of magnitude better and more capable than v. 1.0,” says Elon Musk.
SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has been talking and tweeting about some of the details of the second-generation Starlink, which involves bigger, more capable satellites and the need to deploy a bigger rocket to launch them.
The current Starlink constellation consists of approximately 2,400 first-generation satellites in low-earth orbit. Each weighs about 573 lbs. The Starlink 2.0 orbiters will be 23 feet long and weigh 2,750 lbs. This presents SpaceX with a technical problem—its current Falcon 9 rocket cannot launch payloads of that size. The bigger satellites will be launched using SpaceX Starship, which can deliver 120 satellites into orbit on each reusable rocket launch. Musk says the pace of launches will increase and reiterated that the number of satellites would ultimately exceed 30,000. SpaceX has previously stated that the constellation would eventually expand to as many as 42,000 units.
With the advent of Starlink 2.0, Musk says not only will coverage improve, but data speeds will increase and latency will decrease. The improvements in speed and latency are due to the Starlink v. 2.0 inter-satellite laser communications capability that eliminates the need for routing data through ground stations.
While SpaceX continues its breathtaking pace in innovation, overcoming technical challenges, the company is hampered by U.S. federal regulatory obstacles. The Federal Aviation Administration has been plodding through a Programmatic Environmental Assessment (PEA) since early 2020 on the environmental impact of the SpaceX launch site in Texas. SpaceX says that it expects the PEA in mid-June. Similarly, SpaceX is waiting out a protracted delay in obtaining needed Federal Communications Commission (FCC) licenses and approvals.
More recent Starlink news:
- SpaceX introduces Starlink RV internet for RVers
- Chinese scientists at work on means to destroy Starlink