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China Accuses Elon Musk’s SpaceX Satellites of Nearly Colliding With Its Space Station

China Accuses Elon Musk’s SpaceX Satellites of Nearly Colliding With Its Space Station

Musk does not seem to be letting Chinese complaints trim his ambitious space plans.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zIwLWfaAg-8

It seems Elon Musk is China’s latest target.

China has filed a complaint to the United Nations, accusing satellites launched by SpaceX, the company founded by billionaire Elon Musk of nearly colliding with its space station.

The two Starlink satellites came close to the space station in July and October, Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said Tuesday in Beijing. At the time, Chinese astronauts were conducting missions on the station, which had to adopt emergency measures to avoid collisions, he said.

In a July presentation to the Federal Communications Commission, SpaceX said it had so far launched around 1,800 Starlink satellites and was active in more than 20 countries.

It plans to rapidly boost the pace of satellite launches in the years ahead. In commission filings, Space X has said it wants to add at least around 30,000 more satellites.

The Chinese seem most put out by the SpaceX satellites.

After the complaint was made public, Mr Musk, Starlink and the US were heavily criticised on China’s Twitter-like Weibo microblogging platform.

One user described Starlink’s satellites as “just a pile of space junk”.

The satellites are “American space warfare weapons” and “Musk is a new ‘weapon’ created by the US government and military”, others said.

Another posted: “The risks of Starlink are being gradually exposed, the whole human race will pay for their business activities.”

China is also accusing the US of ignoring obligations under outer space treaties. Meanwhile, there are indications that China is organizing a boycott of Tesla.

One hashtag about the topic on the Twitter-like Weibo platform racked up 90 million views Tuesday.

“How ironic that Chinese people buy Tesla, contributing large sums of money so Musk can launch Starlink, and then he (nearly) crashes into China’s space station,” one user commented.

Musk’s electric car maker Tesla sells tens of thousands of vehicles in China each month, though the firm’s reputation has taken a hit this year following a spate of crashes, scandals and data security concerns.

“Prepare to boycott Tesla,” said another Weibo user, echoing a common response in China to foreign brands perceived to be acting contrary to national interests.

Musk does not seem to be letting Chinese complaints trim his space plans, which include a Starship that is under development and which already has a key customer.

“There’s a need for connectivity in places that don’t have it right now,” or where connections are very limited or expensive, Mr. Musk said this summer. In addition to consumers, Mr. Musk has indicated Starlink could offer services to other businesses, recently saying in a tweet that fliers should ask airlines for Starlink.

The internet service creates a source of demand for Starship, said Matt Weinzierl, a Harvard Business School professor who has studied the space economy.

Historically, those behind big rockets without a clear use for them have faced challenges: “If we don’t know why we built them, it can be a real losing proposition,” Mr. Weinzierl said, adding he thinks the company will identify other uses for the rocket.

Starship, meanwhile, has at least one confirmed customer in place: the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, which in April awarded SpaceX a $2.9 billion contract to develop a Starship to take astronauts back to the surface of the moon.

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The only reason to pay any attention to China in this regard is to know what they are complaining about, because that’s what they are worried about and trying to suppress. Keep it up, Elon.

Note how quickly the US media shifts from throwing rocks at Russia for exploding a satellite in low earth orbit and spewing thousands of unguided chunks around the orbitals, to criticism of a capitalist who is making good money with *guided* satellites which can be deorbited at will if they have problems. The real threat is ignored while the fake threat trends. “Look! Somebody is making money through free enterprise! Stop them!”

They bypass Chinese internet censorship maybe?

I had to fix this:

One hashtag about the topic on the CHINESE GOVERNMENT CONTROLLED Twitter-like Weibo platform racked up 90 million views Tuesday.

The Chinese space station came too close to the two Starlink satellites

There’s probably lots of views by people trying to increase their social score so they don’t get hunted by the robots.

Musk is finding himself in the cross-hairs of ALL governments these days. The central issue is that he is “uncontrollable” and as Putin warns, “can’t be trusted”. In the US, he is about to bankrupt GM and take over the EV market in the EU. So the Brandon administration is rigging everything to the disadvantage of Tesla because of the unions.

Everything is about control these days and one thing about Musk, he will not knuckle under to anyone. He is determined to get to Mars even if it bankrupts him and will not allow SpaceX to be corralled into becoming part of a NASA “consortium” or “partnership”.

I know everyone has an opinion about Musk but keep an open mind. As someone who tracks SpaceX (any you should too Leslie), between the fanboys and haters, it’s mostly click bait.

Life is becoming more and more perilous for SpaceX which is now faced with a possible game ending ruling by the FAA over whether the Boca Chica project in TX will be allowed to even exist in 2 months. As is often the case, it’s about the environment, something the FAA knew from square one and allowed the project to develop so there is no reason why this should be happening right now. That nature preserve didn’t just materialize a few months ago.

I have found Musk to be the most interesting man alive right now. He is not obsessed about money but with the projects it allows him to take on. He has repeatedly stated that he will spend his last dollar on getting to Mars if that is what it takes. That is why he is leaving everyone, including NASA, ESA, Russia and China programs, behind. There has never been anyone who can innovate like Musk with his determination.

His manufacturing innovations are the biggest threat to the unions. He has the highest paid work force and they don’t want to unionize. Musk won’t allow it either.

Everything else is about national and international politics to get him under control. It is embarrassing to the governments who simply can’t keep up with SpaceX even though Musk doesn’t keep his patents a secret. Everyone is copying SpaceX but are learning that their brazen clones can’t compete against the real thing. AND since they don’t innovate, they will always be behind SpaceX. You can use SpaceX technology BUT not if you are just cloning without adding your own innovations.

Tesla has a huge manufacturing facility in China but it is dwarfed by the one just opened in Germany which is itself dwarfed by the one in Austin TX which can outproduce all GM and Ford plants in the US.

Whether it is EV or space projects, Musk is a force that will have to be reckoned with and he has the leverage. Governments can decide to seize his plants but as with microchips and military technology, innovation is the killer advantage and no one has ever more innovative than Musk.

If a man can be judged by the enemies he makes, take a look at his enemies. Everyone tries to frame his as an enemy as their excuse for their own inadequacies or because he is a threat to their own interests. China, Russia, EU, the Masters of the Universe, politicians, unions,…. Musk is making the right enemies. I can’t get enough of him these days.

    henrybowman in reply to Pasadena Phil. | January 3, 2022 at 4:56 pm

    “one thing about Musk, he will not knuckle under to anyone. He is determined to get to Mars even if it bankrupts him and will not allow SpaceX to be corralled into becoming part of a NASA “consortium” or “partnership”… I have found Musk to be the most interesting man alive right now.”

    Every time I look at something Musk is doing, I see Delos D. Harriman.
    There is hope for freedom.

      Musk just keeps plowing ahead regardless of the NASA or the Pentagon decide. He has what they need and it always seems to be more robust and less expensive than what they are asking for. Musk seems to have won over NASA chief Bill Nelson. NASA was committed to the SLS launcher for another ten years but the Falcon Heavy is so much cheaper (reusable and costs about 80-85% less per launch) and adaptable to various missions that they had to commit to the Falcon Heavy.

      SpaceX has been developing its own space program since 2014 independently of NASA and apparently will proceed regardless of what NASA wants to do. The Pentagon is showing interest in applying the reusable cargo rocket as a cheaper and faster (20 minutes vs 9-12 hours) alternative to the C-5 Galaxy. Logistically, that would greatly upgrade war capabilities and flexibility.

      The Pentagon (actually everyone) is concerned about being first to dominate space because whoever wins controls the world. Putin is betting everything that Russia will conquer the world via space. They and China are already throwing their elbows up there and this complaint by China is intended to slow us down. Underscores how much we need the Space Force. The Space Force absolutely needs SpaceX to catch up with China and Russia and they are determined to stop or slow this down and having so many of our politicians, military leaders and corporations in their back pockets is going to be a major hurdle for SpaceX. Luckily, a lot of people on our side are helping (as Nelson seems to be). Trump returning would be a major victory. Musk will need political help if he decides to transfer his TX operations to Cape Canaveral which seems likely. This is one reason why it might be better for DeSantis to delay his presidential run for now. I wonder if that is factoring in Trump’s decision on whether or not to run.

      We all should be tracking this. Better than any movie and it’s for real.

      I finally had a chance to look up Delos D. Harriman. That can’t be a coincidence. He sounds exactly like Musk. Maybe that is what inspired Musk in the first place.

    artichoke in reply to Pasadena Phil. | January 4, 2022 at 11:29 am

    I think he’s the reincarnation of Howard Hughes. Oddball genius who really made a difference.

    What’s to be done – “Who is Elon Musk?”

    What’s next, Musk’s Gulch?

I left be near that plant 🌱 n Austin, it’s a city in itself and unfortunately will be bringing tens of thousands to work in Austin. The city s ruined as is my once small town outside of Austin.
They have all come and built their factories and now Texas is overpopulated and our vast farms and ranches are gone.
This is a s not progress to me, it’s regression

    artichoke in reply to gonzotx. | January 4, 2022 at 11:31 am

    Aren’t there a few hundred miles in several directions for those farms and ranches? Or is that chopped up now too? I know west Texas is very dry and you can’t get much density there.

Spacecraft are assigned orbits and lanes internationally, like air traffic control on steroids (because compared to planes, satellites are near permanent).

Musk’s satellites depend on keeping a rigidly defined distance from the earth and defined orbital positions. If they’re not where they ought to be, his whole business simply doesn’t work.

If the Chinese station experienced a near collision, the reason is almost certainly that Xi was out of his own damn lane again.

    Space is a very, very big place. China couldn’t find a lane of its own? Did they notice that the James Webb telescope that was launched just last week will be stationed a million miles away from earth? Are they now going to complain that it is blocking their view?

    artichoke in reply to henrybowman. | January 4, 2022 at 11:34 am

    There are a lot of Starlink satellites, and at every altitude you must have a “great circle” orbit i.e. you can’t “orbit” 100 miles to the east; that would require constant delicate correction. But China knew the altitude of Musk’s satellites. They should be a few miles higher or lower and this could not have happened.

100% truth. Interesting that China chose a low earth orbit for their satellite that matches the limited band Starlink travels in. China has a history of going where they are not supposed to be and claiming that as their own.

In other news, Space Police are still looking for a cherry red Tesla Roadster convertible involved in an earlier alleged hit-and-run.

That’s funny given what the Chinese and Russians have done with their satellites.

    China has even been accused of zapping our satellites. The International Space Station had an emergency a few months ago where all aboard had to move out of the labs and into the “pods” due to something the Russians had put into a collision course with it. I don’t think half of it is being reported. It’s bare-knuckled jostling for position out there and these incidents are staged for intimidation. We have “space junk collectors” out there. Maybe we should expand the definition of what qualifies as junk to include anything Chinese or Russian.

Now, who should I believe. A U. S. based free enterprise visionary revolutionizing the aerospace industry, or a bunch of lying tyrannical propogandists.

Man, that’s a tough call …………………… NOT.