Destructive solar event destroyed 38 SpaceX Starlink satellites, costing Elon Musk’s company tens of thousands and thousands in losses
- A large solar event destroyed 38 Starlink satellites earlier this 12 months
- The wave of solar particles and radiation caused heated our atmosphere and raised its density, which led to the satellites not reaching higher altitudes
- Thirty-eight Starlink satellites burned up hundreds of miles per hour, costing Elon Musk’s company tens of thousands and thousands of dollars
- ‘This event brings forth the urgent requirements of higher understanding and accurate prediction of the space weather,’ researchers said of their study
A solar ‘destruction event’ earlier this 12 months destroyed 38 of Elon Musk’s Starlink satellites – costing his company tens of thousands and thousands of dollars in losses.
SpaceX launched 49 its low-latency web satellites into space from Florida’s Kennedy Space Center on February 3 – seemingly without incident at first.
Around that very same time, an enormous wave of solar particles and radiation was washing over Earth.
A solar ‘destruction event’ earlier this 12 months destroyed nearly 40 of Elon Musk’s Starlink satellites – costing his company tens of thousands and thousands of dollars in losses. Above: An illustration of a coronal mass ejection impacting the Earth’s atmosphere
That wave was sparked by an explosion on the sun’s surface – typically called solar flares or coronal mass ejections (CMEs) – which might be a part of space weather.
After reaching our planet, the solar material heated our atmosphere and raised the density of the small amounts of air on the altitude of 130 miles where the Starlink satellites had been sent.
The small satellites were speculated to raise themselves several hundred miles higher, but that didn’t occur as a consequence of the atmospheric drag – which increased by a minimum of 60 percent in line with a study from U.S. and Chinese researchers.
‘This event brings forth the urgent requirements of higher understanding and accurate prediction of the space weather in addition to collaborations between industry and space weather community,’ the researchers wrote.
SpaceX launched 49 its low-latency web satellites into space from Florida’s Kennedy Space Center on February 3 – seemingly without incident at first
Thirty-eight of the Starlink satellites sank lower and lower – before burning up at hundreds of miles per hour.
The study also found that the economic loss to SpaceX from the solar storm would have been ‘several tens of thousands and thousands of dollars.’
‘We’ve got illustrated the solar eruption, solar wind propagation, and atmospheric density enhancement, using each observed data and model simulations,’ the study says.
Despite that, the satellites, which each weigh about 570 kilos, posed no danger to anyone on the bottom.
‘The de-orbiting satellites pose zero collision risk with other satellites and by design demise upon atmospheric reentry—meaning no orbital debris is created and no satellite parts hit the bottom,’ SpaceX said in a press release on the time.
SpaceX has over 3,000 satellites in orbit and plans to launch hundreds more.
On Sept. 10, Musk’s company launched 34 Starlink satellites into orbit onboard a Falcon 9 that took off from the Kennedy Space Center.
Thirty-eight of the Starlink satellites sank lower and lower – before burning up at hundreds of miles per hour. Above: An eruption of solar material exploding up off the surface of the suitable side of the sun, 2012.
ELON MUSK’S SPACEX BRINGS BROADBAND INTERNET TO THE WORLD WITH ITS STARLINK CONSTELLATION OF SATELLITES
Elon Musk’s SpaceX has launched greater than 3,000 of its ‘Starlink’ space web satellites into orbit and hopes to have 30,000 within the sky.
They form a constellation designed to offer low-cost broadband web service from low Earth orbit.
While satellite web has been around for some time, it has suffered from high latency and unreliable connections.
Starlink is different. SpaceX said its goal is to offer high-speed, low-latency web all around the world – especially to distant areas.
Musk has previously said the enterprise could give three billion individuals who currently shouldn’t have access to the web an affordable way of getting online.
It’s going to also help fund a future city on Mars.
Helping humanity reach the Red Planet and turn into multi-planetary is considered one of Musk’s long-stated goals and was what inspired him to begin SpaceX.
Musk’s rival Jeff Bezos, the founding father of Amazon, also plans to launch a constellation of low Earth-orbit satellites to offer broadband access to distant areas, as a part of its Project Kuiper.
Nevertheless, astronomers have raised concerns in regards to the light pollution and other interference cased by these satellite constellations.