The Verge has a long read update HERE
SpaceX is in communication with all but three of 60 Starlink satellites one month after launch And two of the 60 have intentionally been de-orbited
It’s been over a month since SpaceX launched its first batch of 60 internet-beaming satellites for the company’s massive Starlink initiative, and all but three of the satellites seem to be working as intended. Initially, SpaceX was able to communicate with all 60 spacecraft after launch, but eventually lost communication with three outliers. The uncommunicative trio will continue to orbit the Earth for a time, but will eventually get pulled down toward our planet by gravity, where they will burn up in the atmosphere.
The rest of the 57 satellites have been working as intended, according to the company. Forty-five of the satellites have raised their altitudes with their onboard thrusters and have reached their final intended orbits of 342 miles (550 kilometers) up. Five of the satellites are still in the middle of raising their orbits, and another five are undergoing additional systems checks before they raise their orbits. As for the remaining two satellites, SpaceX intentionally fired their onboard thrusters with the goal of crashing them into the planet’s atmosphere. There wasn’t anything wrong with those satellites — the company just wanted to test the de-orbiting process.
That means that five total satellites are headed into a fiery grave. “Due to their design and low orbital position, all five deorbiting satellites will disintegrate once they enter Earth’s atmosphere in support of SpaceX’s commitment to a clean space environment,” SpaceX said in a statement.
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