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How Do Starlink Satellites Navigate To Their Final Operational Orbits

Posted in internet, mapping, satellites

When SpaceX deploy batches of Starlink satellites they drop them off in lower orbits and expect the satellites themselves to navigate towards their final operational orbits. This is quite a complex process and one that’s worth discussing, the satellites need to be able to reach the target orbital plane, raise the orbit to operational altitude, and then finally maneuver to a specific slot within that plane before they become operational.

Satellite Orbital Maps by Celestrak.

Starlink Map by Mike Puchol.

Deployment plots by Elias Eccli.

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