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Is There Space for 12,000 More Satellites Up There?

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SpaceX wants to launch nearly 12,000 satellites into orbit, nearly ten times the number of active satellites currently up there. But is there room?

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Elon Musk’s SpaceX Sends Secret US Spy Satellite Into Orbit, Then Lands Rocket

“It was the 34th mission for SpaceX, but its first flight for the Department of Defense, a customer long-pursued by company founder Elon Musk. The privately owned SpaceX once sued the Air Force over its exclusive launch services contract with United Launch Alliance (ULA), a partnership of Lockheed-Martin and Boeing. Monday’s 7:15 a.m. EDT (1115 GMT) liftoff of a classified satellite for the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) officially broke ULA’s 10-year monopoly on launching U.S. military and national security satellites.”

The Plan to Recycle Space Junk for Missions to Mars

“One of our sadder legacies from nearly six decades of space exploration is a chain of orbital debris surrounding Earth. Some pieces are as small as flecks of paint, while others are the corpses of dead satellites long out of fuel. NASA estimates that more than a half-million fragments are out there, occasionally posing threats to the International Space Station (ISS) or satellites. Collisions have happened before and will very likely happen again.”

SpaceX plans worldwide satellite Internet with low latency, gigabit speed

“SpaceX has detailed ambitious plans to bring fast Internet access to the entire world with a new satellite system that offers greater speeds and lower latency than existing satellite networks. The private spacecraft company founded by CEO Elon Musk filed an application Tuesday for satellite space station authorizations with the US Federal Communications Commission. SpaceX recently said that its satellite service’s commercial availability date has not yet been determined, but the application’s technical description mentioned 2019 as a possible time for launching satellites into orbit.”


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Special thanks to Amy Shira Teitel for hosting and writing this episode of Seeker!
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48 thoughts on “Is There Space for 12,000 More Satellites Up There?

  1. I love SpaceX. Nothing better than taking your significant other into orbit for some hot SpaceX.

  2. Are you posting a “DATE WITH AMY 360” in Seeker VR???

    Otherwise i am not interested in subscribing. 😉

  3. Is this even worth the resources to put the satellites up in space? it seems it would be more beneficial to invest in other technologies on our earth

  4. so what happened if any satellite gone malfunction .and start hitting other satellite ??????

  5. Even if the typical satellite is the size of a bus, theres countless buses fitting just fine on our roads on the planet. I think space will be fine.

  6. There are no satelites up in space because the earth is flat and has a firmament above it.

  7. You wilfully omitted that its LEO it can decay, SpaceX already told they’ ll decommission junk satellites by deorbiting them. Their service life is fixed as told by spaceX and wont see extended life, meaning all the 12000 satellites will be actively engaged in 2 way communication with ground station rather than using radar and tracking specs of paint.

  8. 12,000 satellites in orbit pales in comparison to, for example, the 6.4 million cars that we’ve crammed into the relatively tiny greater Los Angeles area.

  9. I don’t like where this is going, what happens if a hacker gains control of a satellite and uses it to spy or as a missile?

  10. Saletites dont exist….please dont make the fun of the un-educated people

  11. Thumbnail is misleading as it would suggest satelites are the size of New York city when in reality they could at a push be the size of a school bus. Im pretty sure we can fit 12 thousand school busses on the earth why couldnt we fit them around it. #clickbait

  12. If what I am testing now would show any promise at all, we would no longer need rockets LOL We shall see.

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