Author Topic: General LEO internet constellation question  (Read 1714 times)

Offline deadman1204

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General LEO internet constellation question
« on: 02/17/2021 08:10 pm »
Not sure which forum to ask this, so its general!

Looking towards the future where there will be multiple large low orbit internet constellations (starlink, kuiper, oneweb, telesat, ect).
I Was wondering about the efficiency of a few different classes of rocket - say Falcon9, New Glenn, and Starship (large, heavy+, and 'bring the mountain to Mohamed').

LEO satellite constellations will require alot of birds in many different inclinations (and probably different altitudes too).
While Starship could vomit like 500+ satellites at one location, is this beneficial? Assuming no refueling (so it cant do 20 inclinations on 1 "launch"), does starship or even new glenn give an advantage? Or would they both have too much capacity for each inclination and orbit?
« Last Edit: 02/17/2021 08:12 pm by deadman1204 »

Offline freddo411

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Re: General LEO internet constellation question
« Reply #1 on: 02/17/2021 08:42 pm »
Not sure which forum to ask this, so its general!

Looking towards the future where there will be multiple large low orbit internet constellations (starlink, kuiper, oneweb, telesat, ect).
I Was wondering about the efficiency of a few different classes of rocket - say Falcon9, New Glenn, and Starship (large, heavy+, and 'bring the mountain to Mohamed').

LEO satellite constellations will require alot of birds in many different inclinations (and probably different altitudes too).
While Starship could vomit like 500+ satellites at one location, is this beneficial? Assuming no refueling (so it cant do 20 inclinations on 1 "launch"), does starship or even new glenn give an advantage? Or would they both have too much capacity for each inclination and orbit?

Starlink, and other constellations utilize many satellites (1000s) with the same inclination.    Sets of the sats occupy different planes defined by differing ascending nodes.   It's possible to move sats from one ascending node to another with minimal propulsion.   SL sats use onboard kypton thrusters to maneuver to change ascending nodes and/or their altitude.

In addition, SL and other constellations can have other inclinations as well, which will be filled by other launches.

So the answer to your question is that starship can launch many sats into one orbit and the sats can distribute themselves to many different ascending nodes as needed.

 
« Last Edit: 02/17/2021 08:43 pm by freddo411 »

Online gongora

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Re: General LEO internet constellation question
« Reply #2 on: 02/17/2021 08:45 pm »
Multiple inclinations would eat up a lot of performance, but you can put up multiple planes at the same inclination in a single launch and let them drift apart.  It takes a while for everything to reach their final positions but the launch cost could go way down.  These big constellations have hundreds to thousands at the same inclination, even when the whole system uses multiple inclinations.

Offline Barley

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Re: General LEO internet constellation question
« Reply #3 on: 02/18/2021 04:36 am »
Also note that Starship is supposed to be cheaper per launch than Falcon 9.  Even in the unlikely event you only need 60 satellites at a particular inclination you can launch Starship 7/8ths empty and it's still a win.

 

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