5-speed listening (Satellites - Level 4)

Satellites may obscure our views of the stars






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Astronomers fear our view of the stars will be obscured. Their warning is because of thousands of satellites going into orbit in 2020. These will provide high-speed Internet worldwide. Space will be so littered with satellites they will compete with stars for our attention. They will form "mega-constellations" that could affect radio astronomy and the quality of telescope images. The satellites will appear as dazzling white light that could be mistaken for stars.

Experts say over 46,000 satellites will go into space in the next few years. An astrophysicist called this a "tragedy". It is five times more than those launched since Sputnik 1, six decades ago. The satellites will provide much faster Internet speeds and greater connectivity to the remotest areas of the world. About 14 million Americans live in rural areas with zero Internet coverage. SpaceX will launch 120 satellites in January and a further 12,000 in the next decade.

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