Science & Technology

Japan tests Starlink to ensure military communications stability

Tokyo, Jun 27 (EFE) – Japan’s defense ministry announced Tuesday that it is using the Starlink satellite Internet connection system on a trial basis to strengthen and ensure communications stability.

Japan’s Defense Minister Yasukazu Hamada said the land, air and marine divisions of the country’s army have been testing this system for communication since March, which some local media had already reported.

“In recent years, threats to the stable use of outer space have increased, and it is therefore important to improve the sustainability of satellite communications,” Hamada said in media statements. “Based on the results of these tests, the Ministry will make a decision “on how to improve the stability of satellite communications.”

The Starlink company, part of tycoon Elon Musk’s SpaceX conglomerate, has become the main means of digital connection for soldiers and civilians in Ukraine amid Russian attacks on the country’s infrastructure.

Japan’s initiative to test this connection system for their armed forces comes in the context of Russian and Chinese advances in their technologies to attack satellites such as those that facilitate data networks.

Japan will consider making full use of Starlink from the next fiscal year, which begins in April, and will also coordinate with the United States and other allied countries to jointly use their respective satellites in case of contingencies, according to local media.

If the contract for Starlink services by Japan’s army goes ahead, it would be the first private contract of this type signed with a provider of low Earth orbit satellite connections.

The ministry has two of its own communication satellites in geostationary orbit to be used by its troops.

Starlink has placed 4,200 small satellites in low Earth orbit to provide high-speed Internet connection and plans to increase the figure to 7,000 in the coming years.

This large number of interconnected laser-technology link points would make it possible to maintain stable connections even in the event of several of its satellites being destroyed.

These devices orbit within 2,000 kilometers from the Earth’s surface, so they operate with improved latency, accelerating the service to an average speed of 25 milliseconds.

This parameter is an improvement to geostationary satellites, which operate with an average latency of 600 milliseconds. EFE


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