SpaceX wants to launch 4,425 satellites in space for global internet


SpaceX, the aerospace company founded by Elon Musk, has just filed its plan for satellite-delivered internet delivery from space. As an application to the Federal Communications Commission makes clear, SpaceX wants to launch 4,425 satellites. That’s more than all active AND inactive satellites currently in Earth orbit.

Elon Musk is not a man who thinks small. Whether it is making a big push for cars that run on electricity with Tesla or creating extremely cheap solar technology for the roof of your house, Musk often has ideas that might seem pretty unrealistic to most. Well, his next one has gone public, SpaceX wants to launch thousands of satellites to move the global internet infrastructure to space:

“Once fully optimized through the Final Deployment, the system will be able to provide high bandwidth (up to 1 Gbps per user), low latency broadband services for consumers and businesses in the U.S. and globally,” the filing reads. The quoted speed of 1 gigabit per second is pretty huge. According to Business Insider, the average internet speed in late 2015 was 5.1 megabytes per second. This means SpaceX will strive to provide internet that is about 200 times faster than the current average.

But does this really have any chance of succeeding or is it another one of those futuristic ideas you hear once and never again? Well, if Musk’s other ventures are anything to go by, the chance is there. SpaceX was the first private company to make flights to the International Space Station, which is quite the achievement. Additionally, companies like Google have reportedly already invested in the project, meaning that the financing is there, at least partially. And thirdly, Musk’s estimate of 10 billion dollars is actually pretty affordable for a project of that scale.

Pic: ©spacex
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