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SpaceX has taken a proactive approach to space stewardship with its recent announcement detailing the retirement of approximately 100 of its first-generation Starlink satellites.

  • Identified Flaw: A flaw potentially increasing failure risk was discovered in a group of early Starlink satellites.
  • Impact on Service: Despite the retirement, Starlink users can rest easy as service will remain uninterrupted. Rather than a dramatic exit, these satellites will undergo a controlled descent to deorbit.
  • Space Junk Concerns: Addressing the issue of space debris, SpaceX ensures these satellites won’t linger and contribute to orbital clutter. With 17 satellites non-maneuverable and the likelihood of loss of control, a risk sits overhead.
  • Controlled Deorbits: SpaceX plans to gradually deorbit these satellites over six months, remaining mindful of orbital traffic by adjusting their paths to avoid collisions.

The current size of the Starlink fleet boasts thousands, with close to 6,000 launched and 406 previously deorbited, maintaining robust service for clients.

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