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HomeNewsScience and SpaceSpaceX has re-incorporated the Falcon 9 into the second-generation Starlink launch schedule

SpaceX has re-incorporated the Falcon 9 into the second-generation Starlink launch schedule

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In Science and Space: SpaceX has decided to use a combination of Falcon 9 and Starship rockets to launch 30,000 satellites on its proposed second generation Starlink broadband constellation.

Goldman has not disclosed when SpaceX will begin launching its second-generation constellation, which is still subject to FCC approval. In January, SpaceX announced that it had chosen to configure its Low Earth Orbit (LEO) network using Starship, a delayed ultra-heavy lifter under development in Boca Chica, Texas.

The launch of several satellites powered by SpaceX’s “tried and trusted Falcon 9” will accelerate the deployment of constellations to power Starlink services. In a letter to the Federal Communications Commission on August 19, David Goldman, director of satellite policy at SpaceX, said:

The Federal Aviation Administration in June completed a long-term environmental impact assessment that will allow Starship to launch from Boca Chica. But first, SpaceX will have to implement dozens of measures to reduce its environmental impact.

Goldman said SpaceX remains committed to deploying all of its 29,988 proposed second-generation satellites — at altitudes of between 340 and 614 kilometers across nine inclined orbits — whether they are launched with Falcon 9 or Starship.

“Specifically, SpaceX plans to launch satellites for its Gen2 constellation beginning with its three 500-kilometer shells, followed by satellites in its lower-altitude shells,” he said. “The result will be that more Americans will receive high-quality broadband faster.”

SpaceX`s constellation plans face opposition from companies, including satellite broadband operator Viasat, which wants the FCC to perform an environmental review before approving the second-generation network. SpaceX has launched over 3,100 satellites for the current generation Starlink with Falcon 9. Usually around 50 batches per mission. More than 2,800 people are currently working on LEO, according to astronomer and space analyst Jonathan McDowell. According to the company, the second generation will offer more dense rural coverage and improved performance while being compatible with his existing Starlink user terminals.

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SpaceX now has permission to deploy his 4,408 satellites at LEO for a network that will connect users from about 550 kilometers above Earth using Ku-band spectrum. Another FCC approval also gives SpaceX permission to launch his 7,500 V-band satellites. The first generation of Starlink will be required to reach a total of approximately 12,000 satellites for global service.

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