By Ramish Zafar, Aug 8, 2021
Space Exploration Technologies Corp.’s (SpaceX) Starlink satellite internet service is making progress in delivering internet connectivity to vehicles. SpaceX’s subsidiary, SpaceX Services Inc, also referred to as SpaceX, has filed an application with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) asking it to operate brand new user terminals. These terminals, ‘high performance’ variants of the dishes currently under use by Starlink’s beta-testers, will provide coverage to moving vehicles, including automobiles, vessels and aircraft. In its application, SpaceX collectively refers to the terminals as Earth Stations In Motion (ESIMs), and it provides details for their technical parameters such as power output and transmit duty cycles.
Starlink Terminals For Vehicles Will Stay Connected To Satellites For Longer
The new terminals will be used on all kinds of moving vehicles, including those operating on the ground and in the sea and air. According to SpaceX’s application, they will lower their transmit power but feature a higher signal gain alongside a higher scan angle and other adjustments suited to their use cases.
While collectively, the new terminals are called Earth Stations in Motion (ESIMs), a segment of these are designed to withstand stringent environmental conditions. SpaceX calls this segment of terminals ‘High Performance’ or HP. Some of the changes that the HP terminals will feature include handling harsher environments by withstanding longer changes in temperature, operating at higher and lower extreme temperatures and improving snow melting capabilities.