October 23, 2021

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SpaceX paused Starlink launches to give its internet satellites lasers

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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — SpaceX hasn’t launched any Starlink internet satellites since June. It turns out it’s because the company has been adding “lasers” to the spacecraft.

Since it last launched a batch of Starlink satellites to low Earth orbit on June 30, SpaceX has been quiet about what’s next for the constellation. With Starlink launches happening frequently in the first half of 2021, this pause raised questions. On Tuesday (Aug. 24), at the 36th annual Space Symposium here, SpaceX President and chief operating officer Gwynne Shotwell explained the break.

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