Starlink likely to FAIL?

Spacenews posted on the recent Falcon 9 loss and Starlink problems:

“In a recent white paper, the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association and National Rural Telecommunications Cooperative (NRTC) argued that the FCC should closely scrutinize SpaceX’s plans to provide broadband internet service via satellite. Those groups say bids by rural cooperatives for RDOF funding to provide broadband service were shut out by both SpaceX as well as fixed wireless networks.

“While delivering broadband service at the speeds promised by these applicants may appear to be viable, this service is currently in beta testing and commercially available on a limited basis in extremely limited areas, and questions remain,” the paper states. “Awarding bids to experimental and unproven LEO satellite service is a direct contradiction” to the rules of the RDOF program, it argued.

“I’m really struggling on the physics and economics” of satellite broadband, said Tim Bryan, chief executive of the NRTC, in a Feb. 4 call with reporters. He claimed there were “anecdotal reports” of people who signed up for Starlink beta but were having problems getting connections any faster than four megabits per second, but didn’t elaborate.

“Starlink’s performance is not theoretical or experimental,” SpaceX noted in its Feb. 3 FCC filing. The company said it had already demonstrated it could meet or exceed key performance tiers, including 100 megabits per second of data to customers and 20 megabits per second of data from them, as well latencies of 31 milliseconds or less.

Bryan said his group’s issue was how Starlink could scale up to serve larger numbers of customers. “My concern is mostly around the capacity not of one or two users, but what happens when you get to 20 or 30 or 40 or 50 thousand users,” he said.

“I have no doubt that the Starlink constellation could be successful in some areas, and in some cases, providing coverage over areas like the deep blue seas and those sorts of places,” he said. “I struggle to see how it’s going to reliably deliver 100-megabit service to the literally hundreds and thousands of customers in the census block groups that it bid for.”

And…recent comments on Parabolic Arc:

I have kept an eye on propulsion systems over the years and the only likely way we will see SSTO vehicles carrying large payloads into space is with Beam Propulsion. Ground arrays providing a kind of energy first stage and GEO station beaming providing the second. Since the vehicle is not discarding any stages it would still be SSTO. The interesting feature is these beam-riding vehicles will probably be very large in diameter, due to beam spreading. How large? Not sure. This is akin to Nuclear Pulse Propulsion where the larger the spaceship’s sail or plate, the more efficient it becomes, as a bomb uses a certain amount of fissile material whether it is large or small.



It is going to be a mess; upwards of a hundred thousand of these smallsats in different constellations with thousands of dead ones hitting live ones making more dead ones as new ones are launched to replace the dead ones.

It never should have been allowed, pandering blatantly to un-needed convenience. Pure greed


You already dug your hole in the ground. I am sure you are happy.

You should really contact someone who is not a toxic creep and get their opinion on your years of harassing me and denying I have any right to any opinion other than the NewSpace dogma you embrace.

You are angry because what I wrote makes too much sense. You seem to be all about some kind of Ayn-Rand-in-Space Cult that satisfies a craving to be part of something.

In the context of this Cult following of NewSpace ideology and entrepreneurs it is just simple marketing propaganda and false advertising to portray a couple hundred miles up as some new space frontier where heroes go to make history.
It is not.

What is bizarre is alongside this P.R. hype is calling the Moon a nothing-burger because “we’ve been there”…because some entrepreneur donor’s rocket cannot go there.

50 miles up is defined as “space”, 62 miles up is also defined as “space”, yet nothing can even orbit at those altitudes. It cannot be defined as “Earth Orbit” yet it is called “space.” And the billionaires are lining up for their faux astronaut wings. I have no problem with non-tourists engaging in Orbital flight being called “Astronauts.” Even though that is defined as a person trained to fly in a spacecraft. A spacecraft does not necessarily fly in space if that is defined as something other than LEO; It is flying in orbit, engaging in Orbital Flight.

Earth Orbit or Orbital Flight are the appropriate accompanying terms for LEO. Space Flight should correctly be defined as travel at or above 22,236 miles up. Why? Simple. At that altitude an object hovers over a spot on the Earth. It is the only really clear demarcation. Any object, even in a highly elliptical orbit that only briefly reaches that altitude above the surface of the Earth, has achieved “Space Flight” because it crossed into “Space.” See how that works?

In my view, Space Flight is not a big deal, Human Space Flight (HSF) is.


A black hole starship would get people there in a year or so (ship time). Accelerate a sleeper ship out of the solar system with beam propulsion at 10 percent of light speed and that would take about 4000 years. 40 centuries is a little long, even if you are frozen, so it looks like it will be a century and likely a couple, before we have enough solar power assets in space to generate the immense energies needed to manufacture small singularity engines. My view of humankind expanding into the solar system and then the galaxy would be these black hole starships (if the concept works) first catching up to the much slower “sleeper ships” already launched and possibly waking the crews up for a much faster voyage.…


“If there’s one thing we know, it’s that landing on Mars is never easy,” said NASA Associate Administrator for Communications Marc Etkind.”

The Moon should be the focus, where all the funding should go for the immediate future. Once we establish a presence there producing hardware, then we can go exploring. Mars is not a good destination. Ceres and the ocean moons of the gas and ice giants are the future.

Mars is a dead end.


Actually, not being able to identify that single path to success is a dead giveaway of a very small mind. I am not claiming to be the one identifying that path- it was Stanislaw Ulam, an Einstein-level genius that stated Nuclear Pulse Propulsion was his greatest work. And Freeman Dyson, another bona-fide genius, validated the original design, and a short list of luminaries, including Wernher von Braun, Carl Sagan (an anti-nuclear activist) and Arthur C. Clarke endorsed the concept.

You don’t have a clue.


The “Nuclear Salt Water Rocket” is…an extremely bad design.

You guess you are “screwed” because of a piece of paper that only requires the superpowers to amend. Ridiculous. Especially considering it is a simple matter of transporting the bomb pits on a human-rated vehicle with an escape system and packaging them to survive as much as practical a launch anomaly. Transporting them directly to the vicinity of the Moon outside the Earth’s magnetosphere, then assembling, testing, and launching nuclear missions there would satisfy amended conditions of the treaty. Such spaceships would be perfectly capable of using their “pulse units” (bombs) to deflect impact threats and this by itself would justify the treaty being rewritten.


My view is different from yours obviously. For the mountain of money they want to pour into this they will get the Isp of about twice that of a chemical rocket- from a reaction a million times more powerful.

Stan Ulam realized that it is hard enough keeping a chemical engine from melting so he thought outside the box, and in fact threw the box away. Nuclear Pulse is like a external combustion engine: the directed nuclear energy device projects a cloud of hi-speed incandescent plasma at the plate. Like the piston in an engine it is pushed with extreme force momentarily but not long enough to melt the face of the piston.

It is akin to a jet catapulted off the deck of an aircraft carrier except it is the aircraft carrier being catapulted. This is no exaggeration as the main problem is the power of a nuclear pulse device means what is being pushed would have to mass in the millions of tons for the system to be as efficient as possible. The amount of fissile material used in a small kiloton range bomb is about the same as used in a megaton range bomb. Nuclear weapons are actually designed to have limited power because after about a hundred kilotons most of the energy is going up and just blowing a hole in the atmosphere. See how that works?


Well…the benefits of crashing instead of landing are not so manifold. It has been theorized that 5 to 10 landings are needed to break even (spacex is not saying). Because it has so many engines and such a small payload I would go with the 10 landings to break even. If the F9 is blowing up or crashing after a lower number of flights on average then the other stages have to make up for that quickly pushing the number of flights needed much higher. They are rocket engines and it is a lightweight highly stressed airframe so the maintenance requirements likely go way up after a certain number of flights increasing the number of flights to make up for that even more. I do not believe any of them have landed 10 times yet. See how that works?

What is needed is a much larger vehicle with much fewer engines…and I am not talking about the shiny starship which is just another version of the space shuttle and has far too many engines in the first stage.


LEO, like Mars, is really a dead end and needs to be abandoned.

Human habitats in space, to include Space Stations, Lunar Cyclers, and Spaceships, require a massive Cosmic Ray Water Shield and a Tether Generated Artificial Gravity system.

The best way to provide these crew compartments is the wet workshop, and a development of the wet workshop- the “fat workshop.”

The fat workshop is a double-hulled Super Heavy Lift Vehicle propellant stage that facilitates a 14 foot thick outer water-filled cosmic ray shield envelope.

A really large upper stage workshop is not going to happen without future iterations of the SLS that can lift 150 tons or more into orbit. The thousand+ tons of water needed to fill the outer envelope of a fat workshop is going to have to come from the Moon, where water derived from lunar ice can be lifted into space with 20 to 25 times less energy than from Earth.

The place for a space station is not LEO, it is GEO, and the radiation environment there requires a cosmic ray water shield. Along with SHLV’s carrying fat workshops a semi-expendable robot lander that can harvest ice and shuttle water up to workshops in Low Lunar Orbit will be required.

The logical progression is: 1. The SHLV, then 2. the fat workshops with tether generated artificial gravity, then 3. the semi-expendable robot lunar landers, which can also act as boosters when docked to stations or cyclers, then 4. when filled with water, boosting the stations as Lunar Cyclers and transiting others across the cislunar sea as GEO space stations, and 5. when Space Stations and Lunar Cycler fleets are complete, assembling, testing, and launching the first nuclear propelled Spaceships to the outer solar system.

And of course, none of this is going to happen with private companies and entrepreneurs.


I am not going to do as you order and “get on twitter” you idiot. Not preaching, not enlightening, not explaining, not doing anything except sharing my views on a public forum….it is YOU that is mocking and denigrating me.


The NewSpace dogma that contaminated the public spaces a decade ago has not gone away- Mars as the second home of humankind, the small reusable rocket taking everything up a loaf of bread and a gallon of gas at a time, the fuel depot miracle allowing cheap spacecraft to go anywhere like gassing up your car, the idea that NASA is the problem; everything too expensive and wasting tax dollars- This has all been a disaster for space exploration. And now these smallsat constellations going up in the tens of thousands. The worst feature of it all is the toxic libertarian cyberthugs that have completely hijacked all public discourse. Like Nazi’s beating up people at the polls…it really deserves that card. Disgusting.


Mr Snarky Answer Richard Seaton •

I more than tolerate, I enjoy watching you double down and lose. Upside to Spudis’ departure is your free agencyReplyShare ›

So there is this thing they do…they mention Dr. Spudis dying when they really want to antagonize. Shameless anonymous cyberthugs. Disgusting.


Published by billgamesh

Revivable Cryopreservation Advocate

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