SpaceX Signs Agreement to Prevent Starlink From Interfering With Astronomy

(Credit: Getty Images/Michael Orso)

The Starlink network currently includes 3,300+ orbiting satellites, which can reflect sunlight and interfere with astronomical observations and photo-bomb images of the night sky. So for months now, SpaceX has been in talks with scientists on minimizing Starlink’s impact on astronomy. The FCC also made it a requirement for SpaceX to reach an agreement with the NSF as a condition for approving a second-generation Starlink network.

The agreement says both SpaceX and the NSF will work together to reduce the brightness of satellites through physical design changes, their orientation in orbit, and other methods. Back in July, SpaceX debuted some of the design improvements, which include using new materials and colors on the satellites to cut down on the reflections.