A plan by Elon Musk’s SpaceX to put some Starlink satellites into lower Earth orbit was confirmed Friday by an appeals court.
The original approval came from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in 2021.
The SpaceX Subscription was part of an effort to provide broadband internet in space for people who currently don’t have access to the internet.
The plan to fly 2,824 satellites into lower Earth orbit was opposed by competitors Viasat Inc. and DISH Network Corp.
Viasat said it believes the “decision is a setback for both space security and environmental protection”.
The company added that if the court had compelled the FCC to address “complex issues surrounding the deployment of mega-constellations in (low Earth orbit), we believe harmful effects that could otherwise last for decades or even centuries.” could have been avoided.”
In a lawsuit, Viasat noted that the SpaceX deployment plan was huge, noting that “for comparison, a total of about 10,000 satellites have been launched in all of human history.”
“We will remain vigilant to ensure that SpaceX operations do not harm our millions of satellite customers,” DISH said.
SpaceX did not immediately comment.
This past week, T-Mobile USA and SpaceX have announced that they will collaborate to improve cell phone service to remote areas via Starlink satellites.
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The companies said the service would eliminate the need for cell towers and extend mobile service to areas where it currently does not exist.
The new service is expected to start texting in beta by the end of next year.
Reuters contributed to this report.