A few hours after launch, the 60 StarLink satellites launched on a single Falcon 9 satellite were seen from the Netherlands. This was possible given a favorable observation geometry of the sun just below the horizon and the satellites at 450 km still in full sunlight. This was observed with some astronomy equipment by at least two local satellite spotters: Marco Langbroek from Leiden, NL and Cees Bassa from Dwingeloo, NL.

This is the future of global connectivity, but also, this could be a threat to the Space environment. With good international support and policies, we can manage this well.

Below is a video by SpaceX, on how each satellite deploys its lengthy solar panels. Am doing some calculations to find out how stiff and low weight the satellite panels and solar panels should be. Any thoughts about this, let me know! My current guess is full composite panel design for both satellite and solar panels, with aluminum frame on the satellite to interface to subsystems like the Krypton engine and the future laser communication terminals.


Below is how the stack of 60 StarLink satellites was packed into the fairing of the Falcon 9. An amazing marvel of engineering!