Featured Image Source: SpaceX Starlink website
SpaceX targets to offer Starlink broadband internet service in portions of the Northern United States and Canada before this year ends. The aerospace company aims to fund its space program by offering internet connection worldwide, focusing in rural areas where internet is too expensive, unreliable, or non-existent. SpaceX has been deploying small, desk-sized internet-beaming satellites that will make up its network. As of today, there is a total of 540 Starlink satellites in orbit, out of the 12,000 that will initially make up the Starlink network.
The founder and Chief Engineer at SpaceX Elon Musk said customers will receive Starlink broadband internet via a user terminal that looks like a “UFO on a stick”, pictured below. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) already approved the operation of one million user terminals in the United States. During the 2020 Satellite conference that took place earlier this year, Musk said Starlink “will be a pretty good experience because it'll be very low latency.”
“We're targeting latency below 20 milliseconds (ms), so somebody could play a fast-response video game at a competitive level, like that's the threshold for the latency,” he stated.
Image Captured by: Boca Chica Village resident Mary @bocachicagal via Twitter.
Today, July 13, some individuals who live in Northern parts of the continent, in Canada and Northern United States, received an update email from SpaceX asking for their full address to “improve their ability to provide location-specific updates” of service roll-out. Those who live in Northern parts of America’s hemisphere will have the opportunity to become the first Beta testers of the service. "Starlink private beta begins this summer with public beta to follow. If you are signed up for updates, we will notify you if beta opportunities become available in your area," the company wrote in the e-mail.
SpaceX also updated its Starlink website today, adding a new page that says ‘Customer Login’ indicating that service roll-out could occur soon!
Drive Tesla Canada, shared via Twitter a series of screenshots from an individual who lives near Red Deer, Alberta, 52.2690° N, 113.8116° W, (pictured below).
Screenshot Source: DriveTeslaCanada.ca
SpaceX already filed for permission to operate Starlink in Canada. According to a recent regulatory filing in the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) website, SpaceX, formally - Space Exploration Technologies Corp., applied for a telecommunications license in Canada. The license SpaceX is seeking is a Basic International Telecommunications Services (BITS) license. If approved, it would authorize the company to beam Starlink’s data – “telecommunications traffic between Canada and any other country,” it reads.
SpaceX also filed several FCC requests to operate Starlink ground stations in several U.S states. Most recent requests filed this month on July 2nd. The FCC document reveals that SpaceX has filed for permission to operate around 32 Starlink ground stations in the United States – only 5 locations have been approved so far. The images below list the locations where ground stations will be located (initially). SpaceX could have hundreds of these stations across the U.S. and ultimately all over the world one day. The stations will provide the linking factor between user terminals and datacenter for the Starlink network.
Data Source: Federal Communication Commission, compiled by Wccftech.com
The company aims to deploy at least one or two Starlink satellite deployments per month in order to achieve having 800 Starlink satellites in orbit which will offer “moderate” internet coverage, according to SpaceX officials. A total of 60 Starlink satellites have the capability to beam low latency, high-speed internet to 40,000 users streaming high-definition videos simultaneously. With 540 satellites already in orbit, it would take the company about four more Starlink launches of 60 satellites each to achieve "moderate" internet coverage in Northern parts of the United States and Canada. You can find out when Starlink will be available in your city via SpaceX's website: STARLINK UPDATES
About the Author
Evelyn J. Arevalo joined Tesmanian in 2019 to cover news as a Space Journalist and SpaceX Starbase Texas Correspondent. Evelyn is specialized in rocketry and space exploration. The main topics she covers are SpaceX and NASA.