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China Developing Anti-Starlink Measures, Aims to Launch Nearly 13,000 Satellites

China plans to establish a large satellite network in near-Earth orbit to provide internet services to users worldwide and to stifle Elon Musk’s Starlink project, according to a South China Morning Post report. The project, referred to as the ‘GW’ constellation, would include 12,992 satellites owned by the newly established China Satellite Network Group Co. The launch schedule for these satellites remains unknown, but the number would rival the scale of SpaceX’s planned network of more than 12,000 satellites by 2027.

The Chinese satellites could be placed in “orbits where the Starlink constellation has not yet reached,” the researchers said, adding that they would “gain opportunities and advantages at other orbital altitudes, and even suppress Starlink.” The satellites could be equipped with an anti-Starlink payload to carry out various missions, such as conducting “close-range, long-term surveillance of Starlink satellites.” Additionally, the Chinese government could cooperate with other governments to form an anti-Starlink coalition and “demand that SpaceX publish the precise orbiting data of Starlink satellites.”

The case of war: The Chinese government has also proposed the development of powerful radar systems and the use of new weapons, including lasers and high-power microwaves, to destroy Starlink satellites that pass over China or other sensitive regions. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has confirmed that the US government has talked to Musk about the use of Starlink satellite internet in Ukraine. However, Musk has stated that Starlink will not be used to escalate conflict in the Ukraine war.

By CircleID Reporter

CircleID’s internal staff reporting on news tips and developing stories. Do you have information the professional Internet community should be aware of? Contact us.

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