Starlink is Here

It is no longer a matter of when, because Starlink is already here, but it is a matter of why, how it works, where it is and what it is.

Why? We are told it provides faster internet speed and to increase internet accessibility to the public and more (much more AI).

As far as what it is and how it works is not as easy to discern. I could not find any safety studies, but some are saying it is safe because it is not 5G. This article says, "Starlink is safe in terms of data transmissions. It isn't 5G, which some people worry about. It isn't the same as Wi-Fi, either. Starlink uses existing frequency bands (the Ka and Ku bands) that have long been used for satellite communication without issue." What Is Starlink and How Does Satellite Internet Work?

Where? In the ionosphere.

The wavelengths that are being used, Ka and Ku, is explained here: Frequency Letter Bands

Environmental review is discussed here:

Is Starlink a cause for concern?

Video - 4 minutes viewing time:


Innovations in the wrong hands are dangerous.

Space, the final frontier?

China Threatens To Destroy Elon Musk's Starlink

Chinese military researchers recently called for the destruction of Elon Musk's Starlink satellites, an extraordinary threat for a state to make against a private foreign enterprise.

In December 2021, China filed a complaint with the United Nations, claiming that two of Musk's Starlink satellites had nearly collided with the Tianhe module of its Tiangong Space Station -- in April and October of 2021-- and that Chinese astronauts had been forced to maneuver the module of the station to avoid the collision. Starlink is part of Elon Musk's SpaceX and the satellites are part of a plan to make internet coverage from the satellites available worldwide, with the goal of launching nearly 12,000 Starlink satellites into low Earth orbit.

Space is becoming crowded and risks of collision -- whether with satellites or space debris -- are not new. Tellingly, China was among the first to help create much of that debris: In January 2007, China tested its first successful anti-satellite missile (ASAT), destroying one of its own inactive weather satellites and creating one of the world's largest space debris incidents. That space debris is still floating around in space, causing collision risks every day.

The United States rejected China's claims that the Starlink satellites had endangered China's space station. The US stated that if there had been a "significant probability of collision" with China's space station, the U.S. would have given notice to China ahead of time. "Because the activities did not meet the threshold of established emergency collision criteria, emergency notifications were not warranted in either case."

China is now taking things a step further: Chinese military researchers are threatening that Musk's Starlink satellites must be destroyed. The problem, however, does not appear so much to be the fear of collision, but rather that China believes that Starlink could be used for military purposes and thereby threaten what China calls its national security.

Five senior scientists in China's defense industry, led by Ren Yuanzhen, a researcher with the Beijing Institute of Tracking and Telecommunications -- which is under the People Liberation Army's (PLA's) Strategic Support Force – recently wrote that "a combination of soft and hard kill methods should be adopted to make some Starlink satellites lose their functions and destroy the constellation's operating system."

Soft kill methods target software and operating systems of the satellites, whereas hard kill methods physically destroy the satellites, such as using an ASAT weapon.

According to the scientists, China should "vigorously develop countermeasures" against Starlink, as such capabilities are necessary for China "to maintain and obtain space advantages in the fierce space game."

Unsurprisingly, China has eagerly copied Elon Musk's SpaceX to achieve its own space ambitions: China's Long March 2C rocket, for instance, which China launched in the summer of 2019, had parts that were "virtually identical" to those that are used to steer the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.

China is not the only state actor to show an interest in interfering with Musk's Starlink satellites.

Russia too has sought to jam Starlink's internet service in Ukraine and failed. "Starlink has resisted Russian cyberwar jamming & hacking attempts so far, but they're ramping up their efforts," Musk tweeted in May.

Starlink is a problem for Russia because Musk's satellites have enabled Ukraine to stay connected to the internet – and the rest of the world – amid Russian President Vladimir Putin's attempts to cut the country off.

Musk began to send Starlink terminals to Ukraine in late February at the request of Ukrainian government officials, as a backup for when Russia would predictably try to cut off internet access. According to one US general, the use of Starlink in Ukraine ruined Putin's attempts to isolate the country.

"The strategic impact is, it totally destroyed Putin's information campaign," said Brig. Gen. Steve Butow, director of the space portfolio at the Defense Innovation Unit.

"He never, to this day, has been able to silence Zelenskyy."

"We've got more than 11,000 Starlink stations and they help us in our everyday fight on all the fronts," Mykhailo Fedorov, Ukraine's vice prime minister, told Politico.

"We're ready, even if there is no light, no fixed internet, through generators using Starlink, to renew any connection in Ukraine."

China's threats against Musk's Starlink is more proof that the country is not ready to let anyone stand in the way of its "fierce space game", as China put it. General David Thompson, the U.S. Space Force's first vice chief of space operations, possibly trying to downplay the Chinese's Communist Party's threat to the West, described it as merely a "shadow war."

In this "space war", China – and Russia to a slightly lesser degree -- is conducting attacks against U.S. satellites with lasers, radio frequency jammers, and cyber-attacks every day. While the attacks are "reversible" for now, which means that the damage to the attacked satellites is not permanent, they demonstrate China's malign intentions.

"The threats are really growing and expanding every single day. And it's really an evolution of activity that's been happening for a long time," Thompson said in November 2021.

"We're really at a point now where there's a whole host of ways that our space systems can be threatened."

In addition to its "fierce space game", China is forging ahead with a number of projects that will significantly accelerate the country's space capabilities.

China has reportedly sped up its program to launch a solar power plant in space. The purpose of the plant is to transmit electricity to earth by converting solar energy to microwaves or lasers and directing the energy to Earth, according to the South China Morning Post. The first launch of the project is scheduled for 2028 and will be the world's first such project in space. It is probable that China got the idea from the US; NASA reportedly proposed a similar plan more than two decades ago but never went on to develop it.

China recently launched its third crewed mission to the Tiangong Space Station's Tianhe module, where three astronauts will work on completing the space station before returning to Earth in December. China only launched the first module of the Tiangong Space Station in April 2021, but expects to have the space station fully crewed and operational by the end of the year, when the space station will have an additional two science lab modules and a robotic cargo ship. The space station will also help China to deploy and operate its new space telescope, Xuntian, meant "to rival NASA's aging Hubble Space Telescope, with a field of view 300 times larger and a similar resolution. It will make observations in ultraviolet and visible light, running investigations related to dark matter and dark energy, cosmology, galactic evolution, and the detection of nearby objects." Xuntian is scheduled to launch in 2024.

China's explicit goal is to become the world's leading space power by 2045. It is important to keep in mind that China's space program – even what might look like harmless, civil aspects of space exploration – is heavily militarized. The organization in charge of China's manned space program, for instance, is the China Manned Space Engineering Office, which is under China's Central Military Commission Equipment Development Department. Similarly, the People's Liberation Army runs China's space launch sites, control centers and many of China's satellites.

Is Starlink going to be the source of a 'new internet'?

Musk hints at partnership with Apple on iPhone 14 satellite connectivity

Elon Musk to Provide Florida With Starlink Satellites in Response to Hurricane Ian

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis said SpaceX Chief Executive Elon agreed to provide the company’s satellite internet service, Starlink, for help in response to Hurricane Ian in areas of Southwest Florida still without connectivity.

“We are working with Elon Musk and Starlink satellite. They are positioning those Starlink satellites to provide good coverage in Southwest Florida and other affected areas,” DeSantis told reporters on Saturday. “We are expecting 120 additional large Starlink units to deploy to Southwest Florida.”

Who is controlling Elon Musk? Is he placating the people or is he the real deal as he infers?
Much of his wealth has come from the US military (of defense) funded by the US tax payers.

Elon Musk's Starlink Makes Asia Debut With Japan Launch: What You Should Know

SpaceX’s Starlink announced that it has now launched its services in Japan, making it the first Asian nation to get Elon Musk ’s high-speed internet service.

CEO Musk’s Starlink, which became a ‘crucial support' system for Ukraine after Russia invaded the country, is now expanding its reach in Asia. Starlink, on its Twitter, posted that the services are now available in Japan too.

“Starlink Launches Service in Japan - First Country in Asia,” SpaceX posted on Twitter.

This came after Japanese telecommunications operator KDDI Corporation last year in September announced that it chose Musk’s Starlink to deliver its high-speed, low-latency broadband internet to its 1,200 remote mobile towers in Japan.

The corporation then, in a statement, said, “as soon as 2022, KDDI will be able to offer an urban mobile connectivity experience to its rural mobile customers.”

“An experimental license has been issued by the MIC (Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications) to operate the ground station for Starlink service installed at KDDI’s Yamaguchi Satellite Communication Center. Both companies have been conducting a series of technical demonstrations to evaluate their quality and performance,” it noted.

Earlier in August, SpaceX landed a deal with Japan’s Sky Perfect JSAT Holdings, Inc. for the use of the U.S. company’s Starship to launch Sky Perfect's Superbird-9 communication satellite.

Ukrainian Starlink units go dark over funding issues – media

Kiev is concerned about losing access to Elon Musk’s internet service if the US or UK doesn’t step in to pay

Some 1,300 Starlink satellite terminals went offline in Ukraine last week due to a failure to pay the military’s internet bills, deepening fears that the country will no longer be able to afford the pricey satellite service, two sources familiar with the situation told CNN on Friday.

The terminals, all part of a block purchased from a British company in March, began to go dark on October 24 for lack of funding, causing a “huge problem ” for the military that depended upon them. Aware the bill was coming due and that they would be unable to pay it, the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense asked its UK allies for $3.25 million to cover the monthly cost and rotated the terminals out of use so they wouldn’t wink out at a critical moment. However, their request was turned down.

Starlink parent company SpaceX alerted the Pentagon in September that it could no longer pay the full cost of Ukraine’s Starlink usage, asking Washington to pick up the slack, according to CNN. With approximately 25,000 Starlink terminals in Ukraine, Musk estimated the military’s use of the service would cost nearly $400 million over the next 12 months. Fewer than 11,000 were being paid for at the time he wrote to the Pentagon.

Musk then appeared to change his mind about footing the bill for the service a few days later, tweeting “We’ll just keep funding Ukraine for free .”

However, a senior defense official told CNN SpaceX has continued negotiating with the Pentagon, adding that officials are eager to get Musk to commit resources in writing because they fear he will change his mind."

Western media have accused him of hindering the network's operation by Ukrainian troops in Russian-controlled areas, which Musk denies. Last month, he warned that even though the company has “diverted massive resources toward defense ” as the Russian military attempts to take the system out, “Starlink may still die .”

Moscow believes Starlink is a legitimate target, reasoning that the US and its allies have been using “elements of the civilian space infrastructure, including commercial, for military purposes .” Because this “essentially constitutes an involvement in military action through a proxy ,” the “quasi-civilian ” satellite network is fair game, Russian diplomat Konstantin Vorontsov told the UN last month.

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Russian troops have claimed that they have captured Elon Musk’s satellite internet terminals as war trophies in the Donetsk region, where combat has become intense in recent weeks.

War Trophy For Russia: Starlink Terminals That Ukraine Was Using Against Russian Military Reportedly Seized By DPR Fighters

The commander of the Tsarskie Wolves organization said in an interview that the Russian fighters in the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) captured the Starlink satellite terminals as a bounty.

The former head of the Russian Space agency Roscosmos, Dmitry Rogozin, who underwent successful surgery after being wounded in Donetsk, also told reporters that Russian troops had captured a wide variety of enemy trophies in DPR, including high-tech equipment.

On its part, local Russian media was quick to conclude that since the Russian side had acquired the Starlink subscriber equipment, there were chances for Russians to study these terminals or use them in the battle against Ukraine.

In November last year, Russian state media TASS reported that the country was gearing up to field a network of space-based satellites dubbed ‘Skif’ to provide affordable, high-speed internet access.

A report in local media asserted that the Russian specialists might create “replacement” signal reception points, which, during operation, can bring a lot of problems for the Ukrainian military.

For instance, in October, the Russian media said that the invading troops were using the Tirada-2S satellite communications electronic jamming system against Starlink.

Against that backdrop, these claims may induce some anxiety in Ukrainian officials. Last month, a Russian weapons manufacturer said it had developed a Starlink terminal communication detection radar called Borshchevik, which was being tested on the battlefield.

kilometers.” However, EurAsian Times could not independently corroborate these assumptions published extensively in Russian media.

There have been speculations that Moscow was constantly devising strategies to destroy the Starlink terminals. A Russian media report based on experts’ opinions said in October that a massive number of missiles with a target engagement range of at least 500 kilometers would be required to obliterate the Starlink satellite network.

Even though Ukraine has contested the claims about Russia capturing the terminals, this could come as a snub to Elon Musk, who owns the SpaceX Starlink network. Musk had earlier claimed that the terminals supplied to Kyiv worked smoothly. Musk went so far as to say that Russia was trying everything to destroy these terminals.

Starlink & The War In Ukraine

Ukraine’s deputy prime minister, Mykhailo Fedorov, asked Musk to activate SpaceX’s Starlink satellites for use in Ukraine on Twitter shortly after the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February. Musk immediately took up the request and responded on Twitter: “Starlink service is now active in Ukraine. More terminals en route.”

Days later, in March 2022, Musk claimed that Russia had jammed Starlink terminals in Ukraine for hours at a time. However, he also added that after a software upgrade, Starlink was functioning normally.

“Starlink, at least so far, has resisted all hacking and jamming attempts,” tweeted Musk on March 25.

Since they became operational in Ukraine, Starlink terminals have significantly aided Kyiv’s military operations against the Russian troops. As previously reported by EurAsian Times, the Ukrainian military has allegedly used Starlink to launch drone attacks on Russian tanks and positions, especially in areas with poor infrastructure and no internet access.

It may be pertinent to note that the alleged capture of Starlink terminals by Russian soldiers comes over a month after Bloomberg reported that Ukraine would receive an additional 10,000-plus Starlink satellite dishes from SpaceX. The terminals have been instrumental in providing internet amid Russian attacks on communications infrastructure.

At the time, Ukraine’s deputy prime minister Mykhailo Federov announced that the lingering financial issues around the terminals had been resolved as several European countries stepped up to shoulder the costs.

“SpaceX and Musk quickly react to problems and help us,” Federov told Bloomberg. Federov also noted that “there is no alternative to satellite connections” while asserting that the 10,000 new terminals add to the 22,000 already received and will be used to “stabilize connections for critical situations.”