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SpaceX’s 300th successful mission

February 22, 2024

Last weekend there were multiple launches made by SpaceX with its Falcon 9 rocket making its 300th successful mission. However, the company has also started de-orbiting some of its Starlink satellite while at the same time explaining its plans for its work with T-Mobile and telephony.

A tweet from company President, Gwynne Shotwell, said: “Falcon is the most reliable and prolific launch system in the world today. Many thanks to the incredible team @SpaceX and our partners, customers and suppliers for helping make it happen!”

Astrophysicist Jonathan McDowell said that the following Starlinks, launched in the 2020-2022 timeframe have started lowering their orbits: Starlink#1120, 1194, 1239, 1245, 1243, 1442, 1409, 2269, 3353 and 3581.

The deorbiting scheme covers about 100 Starlink satellites.

McDowell says that (as at February 20th) there are 4,743 Starlinks correctly on their stations out of 5,850 launched and out of a planned total of 34,396 craft.

As to the Starlink/T-Mobile direct-to-cellular scheme, SpaceX and T-Mobile had a meeting with the FCC on February 16th, and where discussions were held as to how SpaceX would operate its system.

The SpaceX/T-Mobile team asked the FCC to look at what it described as its “next generation” scheme which is designed to close coverage gaps for consumers and provide essential connectivity during and after emergencies. “Rather than impose outdated and overly prescriptive satellite regulations onto a technology that breaks down the traditional silos between terrestrial and satellite rules, the FCC should accommodate ‘Supplemental Coverage from Space (SCS)’ within the pathbreaking flexible use licensing policies that enabled the US to lead the way in wireless innovation”

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