Russia's invasion of Ukraine has entered its fourth week. The war has caused the destruction of important infrastructures, including telecommunications towers. Last month, the Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Digital Transformation of Ukraine Mykhailo Fedorov asked SpaceX founder Elon Musk for help with connecting communities to the Starlink broadband constellation soon after Russian soldiers attacked the country. SpaceX rapidly delivered the user terminals that actively provide internet service to the war-torn country.
The company has delivered multiple trucks loaded with Starlink Kits that include all the necessary equipment to access the Internet network. SpaceX delivered another truck loaded with more equipment to support Ukraine on Friday, March 18. Reliable internet service enables emergency response teams to assist with keeping civilians safe from Russian attacks. "A new batch of Starlink stations! While Russia is blocking access to the Internet, Ukraine is becoming more open to the entire world. Ukraine is the truth. The truth always wins. Thank you, Elon Musk, the Government of Poland, and Orlen," said Fedorov. Russia is known for the severe censorship it imposes upon its citizens, having Starlink user antennas in Ukraine is crucial for freedom of speech. Starlink is already in use at multiple humanitarian assistance shelters in Ukraine to enable people to share their story with the world and maintain communication with loved ones.
The Starlink user terminal is very easy to install with an App that provides instructions for setting up the network. Starlink became the most downloaded App in Ukraine, according to data by Sensor Tower. Ever since the company delivered Starlink user terminals to Ukraine, global downloads of the Starlink App via Google Play and the Apple App Store have more than tripled during the past 2 weeks. The Starlink App has been downloaded a total of 98,000 times across Ukraine as of March 14th.
A new batch of Starlink stations! While Russia is blocking access to the Internet, Ukraine is becoming more open to the entire world. Ukraine is the truth. The truth always wins. Thank you, @elonmusk, the Government of Poland, and Orlen. pic.twitter.com/TP0kpn3rPS— Mykhailo Fedorov (@FedorovMykhailo) March 18, 2022
SpaceX Starlink engineers released a software update that will allow the Starlink user terminals (dish antennas) to reduce power consumption to work on low-energy even when Ukrainian users experience power outages in the midst of the war. “Updating software to reduce peak power consumption, so Starlink can be powered from car cigarette lighter,” Musk said on March 3rd, “Mobile roaming enabled, so phased array antenna can maintain signal while on moving vehicle.” If Starlink users experience a power outage they will be able to connect the dish to a car’s cigarette lighter to communicate via the Starlink satellite network. This feature is useful for rescue teams that are protecting civilians on the go. For more information about the service visit SpaceX’s official website Starlink.com.
Featured Image Source: SpaceX Starlink.com
About the Author
Evelyn Janeidy Arevalo
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.