SpaceX unveils secretive 'Starshield' network to support the US military  trends now

SpaceX unveils secretive 'Starshield' network to support the US military  trends now
SpaceX unveils secretive 'Starshield' network to support the US military  trends now

SpaceX unveils secretive 'Starshield' network to support the US military  trends now

Elon Musk's SpaceX unveils secretive 'Starshield' variation of its Starlink satellites that are designed to support the US military Musk's firm has quietly revealed an ambitious business venture called Starshield SpaceX claims the venture will be dedicated to supporting US national security It will initially focus on hosted payloads, Earth observation and communications

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SpaceX has quietly revealed a secretive satellite project called 'Starshield' that will 'support national security' in the US. 

Elon Musk's firm has added a new page to its website that outlines the project, which will create a network of satellites for US government entities. 

It says the Starshield network will be focused on hosted payloads, Earth observation and communications, which could include signals intelligence or secure internet. 

SpaceX says: 'Starshield leverages SpaceX's Starlink technology and launch capability to support national security efforts.' 

Image from the Starshield page on SpaceX's website. The new project will 'support national security efforts'

Image from the Starshield page on SpaceX's website. The new project will 'support national security efforts'

What is Starshield? 

Starshield is a new venture from SpaceX, Elon Musk's private space firm.

On the firm's website, SpaceX says Starshield will 'leverage Starlink technology and launch capability to support national security efforts'.

It will focus on three areas - Earth observation, communications and hosted payloads. 

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Starlink is a satellite internet constellation operated by SpaceX that provides satellite global internet access coverage.

SpaceX has so far launched more than 3,000 Starlink satellites into space, although Musk wants to eventually bring that number to past 40,000. 

'While Starlink is designed for consumer and commercial use, Starshield is designed for government use,' SpaceX explains.

SpaceX also suggests Starshield will offer cryptography – secure communication in the presence of malicious third-parties – when supplying internet to the US government.  

'Starshield uses additional high-assurance cryptographic capability to host classified payloads and process data securely, meeting the most demanding government requirements,' it says. 

Starshield will also include a system of lasers that route data between individual satellites in the constellation. 

'Starlink's inter-satellite laser communications terminal, which is the only communications laser operating at scale in orbit today, can be integrated onto partner satellites to enable incorporation into the Starshield network,' the firm adds.

Starshield will also include a system of lasers that route data between individual satellites in the constellation

Starshield will also include a system of lasers that route data between individual satellites in the constellation

SpaceX has so far launched more than 3,000 Starlink satellites into space, although Musk wants to eventually bring that number to past 40,000

SpaceX has so far launched more than 3,000 Starlink satellites into space, although Musk wants to eventually bring that number to past 40,000 

Other specific details about the project are scarce; MailOnline has reached out to SpaceX for more information. 

According to Gunter's Space Page, there have been two Starshield launches already,

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