Sun, Moon and Starlink
Once upon a time: the starry sky. In the coming years, more than 10,000 new satellites will change it significantly - with unforeseeable consequences.
When astronomer Anthony "Tony" Tyson first heard about Elon Musk's "Starlink" project in 2015, he wasn't overly concerned. "We all thought they were going to be small satellites," says Tyson. But in May 2019 the shock came for the 80-year-old researcher. The satellites that Elon Musk's company SpaceX deployed in space were not small. And they weren't dark either, but reflected the light of the sun. Humans could see it with the naked eye days after launch: a string of pearls of brightly glowing dots moving rapidly across the night sky.
The new celestial objects also seemed to disrupt large observatories. Images circulating the internet showed the starry sky obscured by ugly streaks: clusters of Starlink satellites swept through a telescope's field of view during the long exposure. For Tyson, at the latest, the red alert was announced: After all, he is the mastermind behind an ambitious new observatory that has been under construction for five years on a 2600 meter high mountain in Chile - and because of the Starlink satellites could fall far short of its potential.
2020 this Vera C. Rubin Observatory should be finished. With him, Tyson and his team want to…