A real weathercock: Elon Musk, after making, then withdrawing and then resubmitting a bid to take over Twitter, just announced that he would finally continue to fund the Starlink internet network in Ukraine, despite having announced the day before that. he wanted to stop it. “No matter what… even if Starlink is still losing money and other companies are getting billions from taxpayers, we will continue to fund the Ukrainian government,” the most senior person tweeted. rich in the world on Saturday 15 October.
On Friday, October 14, Elon Musk warned that SpaceX “(couldn’t) continue to fund the existing system indefinitely and send thousands of additional terminals (…). It’s not fair.” SpaceX sent a letter to the Pentagon last month indicating it could no longer afford the cost of service in Ukraine, CNN reported. According to the broadcaster, the company asked the US Department of Defense to take over funding for the use of Starlink by the Ukrainian government and its military, which was estimated to cost $400 million over the next 12 months.
25,000 terminals deployed in the country to date
Since the start of the war in Ukraine, SpaceX has provided thousands of terminals there, which provide an Internet connection through a constellation of satellites that form the Starlink network. Around 25,000 terminals have thus been deployed in the country to date. Elon Musk assures that, with the exception of a “small percentage”, all the costs of installing and maintaining Starlink terminals in Ukraine have been borne by SpaceX.
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The Starlink network has helped maintain internet coverage in areas of Ukraine affected by the Russian military. By June, about 15% of Ukraine’s existing Internet infrastructure had been destroyed or damaged, authorities said. Starlink is also widely used by Ukrainian forces to calculate the trajectory of their missiles and geolocate their targets.
SpaceX doesn’t need to launch 42,000 satellites for Starlink, CEO claims