Technology

SpaceX gets FCC license for 1 million satellite-broadband user terminals

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launching into the sky.

Enlarge / A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying 60 Starlink satellites launching from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on January 29, 2020. (credit: Getty Images | SOPA Images )

SpaceX has received government approval to deploy up to 1 million user terminals in the United States for its Starlink satellite-broadband constellation.

SpaceX asked the Federal Communications Commission for the license in February 2019, and the FCC announced its approval in a public notice last week. The FCC approval is for “a blanket license for the operation of up to 1,000,000 fixed earth stations that will communicate with [SpaceX’s] non-geostationary orbit satellite system.” The license is good for 15 years.

As SpaceX’s application said, the earth stations are “user terminals [that] employ advanced phased-array beam-forming and digital-processing technologies to make highly efficient use of Ku-band spectrum resources by supporting highly directive, steered antenna beams that track the system’s low-Earth orbit satellites.”

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