The number of satellite circling the Earth right now is approaching 5,000. The number that are not broken, and are being actually used, is just over 1,000. However, Space X, Elon Musk’s megacompany, is approved to launch well over 10,000 satellites over the next several years, to serve a single purpose: Give broadband internet to every human on Earth no matter where they are.
Unless it is cloudy, I guess. I mean, Satellite TV does not work when the weather is bad.
Not to be a curmudgeon about this, but I wonder if this increases the likelihood of a Kessler event?
There are important details. Most of these satellites will be in low orbit, and a large number will be in even lower orbit. I assume this means that of the several thousand satellites circling the Earth at 1,000 to 1,400 km, there will be a regular replacement cycle, because don’t low orbit satellites’ orbits wear down?
Anyway, it is a very interesting project. Read about it here.