Jul 21, 2022

SpaceX’s first Starlink V2 satellites spotted at Starbase

Posted by in categories: Elon Musk, internet, satellites

On Monday, SpaceX was spotted loading some of the first Starlink V2 satellite prototypes into a custom mechanism designed to refill Starship’s magazine-like payload bay.

While it’s not the first time SpaceX has used the dispenser, the photos captured by photographer Kevin Randolph are the first to clearly show real prototypes of the next generation of Starlink satellites. According to CEO Elon Musk, those Starlink Gen2 or V2 satellites will be “at least 5 times better”, “an order of magnitude more capable,” and about four times heavier than current (V1.5) Starlink satellites.

The potential of the new satellite bus design paired with Starship’s massive fairing and lift capacity could dramatically improve the viability and cost-effectiveness of SpaceX’s Starlink constellation. First, though, the company needs to launch and qualify prototypes of the new satellite design and verify that all associated ground support equipment works as expected.

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