Starlink Project to Provide High-Speed, Low-Cost Internet Connections

The future of the Internet is here

Elon Musk, owner of SpaceX, the organization which leads space-technology, advancements, and innovation, looks to improve and give better service to both the public and to companies. They’re planning to launch Starlink project, their project which would provide fast, reliable, and cheap internet connection—a true delight to the ears of consumers.

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Starlink Project Illustration
This image was taken from Mark Handley of the University College London

What is the Starlink project?

Elon Musk presenting
This image was taken from Dave Mosher of Business Insider

Most often referred to by many as Starlink, it is the project by SpaceX to be able to develop and provide high-performance, low-cost, and innovative satellite bus transceivers to execute better-experiencing and more reliable Internet communication system.

Starlink could be efficient in delivering faster, cheaper, and more accessible Internet connections to airplanes, cars, ships, even some remote areas.

What would be the benefit of the Starlink project?

The Starlink Project Illustration of the shortest path (Singapore and London)
This image was taken from Mark Handley of the University College London

As we can see, the Starlink project is an innovation that will allow consumers and businesses to have a more affordable Internet system with faster speeds—it also boasts its ability to be able to bring better gaming experience (no lags) and International Teleconferencing.

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In addition to that, it’s also going to be beneficial for financial institutions because they’ll have the chance to gain information about markets faster than what our current technology has to offer.

Starlink’s main goal is to complete a total of 12, 000 satellites by the end of 2027 into Low Earth Orbit (LEO). By then, there will be more satellites, at least six (6) times of what we have currently. It will, therefore, envelop the planet with Internet access that is low-cost with low-latency, high-speed, and more accessible.

Musk, however, disclosed that it might not be effective in the first few years when it gets  started because we might not have the technology the project requires.

There is a lot of new technology here. So it’s possible that some of these satellites may not work. There is a small possibility that all of the satellites will not work.”

Computer-networking researcher and expert at the University College London, Mark Handley, said that this might be the next best thing we will see in context to new networks as it can positively affect everybody’s lives.

What goals does the Starlink project entail?

According to Elon Musk, he yearns in solving two (2) huge problems with our modern Internet: The substantial lagging between far-off locations and the lack of affordable and good-quality connections.

In addition to that, Musk mentioned that it will require around 400 satellites to be able to begin the minor Internet coverage; 800 for moderate; and the major goal is to deploy about 1, 600 satellites.

As mentioned above, this will be relevant to financial institutions because the market will be messed up if there are lags or if latency is experienced. Moving billions of dollars in a fraction of a second could result to a loss for some competitions.

So, SpaceX’s goal is to put an end to the lag of long-distance connections and to be able to distribute rampant high-speed Internet access all over the world.

Project completion has Musk thinking because just completing it could cost $10 billion or more as per SpaceX’s Chief Operating Officer (COO), Gwynne Shotwell. However, they contested it and said that it could allow SpaceX to net around $30 up to $50 billion in a year—more than a hundred percent if the operations are done correctly.

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What would these Starlink spacecrafts look like?

According to SpaceX, the last form of the spacecrafts would allow linking of four (4) other satellites using lasers when they continuously revolve around Earth. As of this moment, no other provider is able to provide this and this is what would sell the product; making it special, one-of-a-kind, and affordable.

However, Musk said that the first (1st) batches of the satellites might not be laser-run. Instead, they would connect them using connections from the ground and some antennas that can be maneuvered. Nevertheless, there will come a time when users will be tethering to Starlink terminals that will cost around $200 which can steer an antenna without moving anything.

Musk even visualized it as a satellite that looks like a small or a medium-sized pizza. So, once Starlink deploys hundreds of satellites that are linked by lasers, it could transmit data close to light speed even in indirect paths.

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To give an example, once Starlink is fully operational, it can allow up to 1,100 users, all streaming videos that have 4K quality all at once without latency and interruptions.

Once the first 1,600 Starlink satellites are in orbit, no more than six or seven will be overhead and visible to user terminals at any one time.”

Problems that the Starlink can face

Since it’s just the start of a newer type of technology, not everyone can board it all at once. Handley says that a majority of Internet users won’t be able to subscribe to it all at once—it’s just not going to work.

If millions of people want to hop on to Starlink all at one time, that is just not going to work within a populated area like a city. The problem is akin to a cell tower being overloaded with too many users, which can slow or disrupt connectivity.”

Another is the fact that there are millions of unwanted space junk debris floating around our orbit which can damage other spacecrafts and can disrupt Internet connections. Space debris is a serious thing, in fact, the speed it can travel to is more than ten (10) times faster than the speed of a bullet or a pellet shot from a g*n.

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This means that even a tiny piece of debris colliding with a spacecraft can cause serious damage to it. Musk made announcements that he will be presenting some of the more important details of this project next month and that we should be prepared for what it has to offer.

What do you think about SpaceX’s plan of establishing a cutting-edge, low-cost Internet connection? Would this be effective in terms of solving major global problems when it comes to Internet connections? Or would the Starlink project be like other innovations that just did not seem fit to be part of the advancements we now have?

What do you think?

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