Elon Musk’s Starlink Technology Proven Effective for Ukrainians amidst War

Elon Musk’s Starlink Technology

In a piece of recent news, Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk’s Starlink technology has been very effective in keeping Ukrainians online during the Russian invasion. According to Ukrainian Vice Prime Minister Mykhailo Fedorov and the Minister of Digital Transformation of Ukraine, Starlink’s active services have been very effective in helping Ukrainians be active on online platforms despite the ongoing war.


Elon Musk’s Starlink Technology


To date, Elon Musk’s Starlink technology has proven highly effective for Ukrainians. Ukraine has so far received shipments of thousands of antennas from Musk’s companies and European allies, which have shown to be very effective in keeping Ukrainian civilians and government officials online, Fedorov said during an interview. He added, “The quality of the link is excellent. We are using thousands, in the area of thousands, of terminals with new shipments arriving every other day.”

Fedorov last tweeted on Friday about the arrival of the most recent shipment of Starlink stations, saying that while Russia is blocking access to the Internet, Ukraine is becoming more open to the entire world. He thanked Musk, the government of Poland and the Polish fuel retailer Orlen.


Starlink and Ukrainian Drone


Several reports suggest that Starlink technology has enabled a Ukrainian drone unit to track down Russian invaders. Aerorozvidka (Aerial Reconnaissance) unit drone teams, especially those in more rural areas, were using Starlink technology to connect to intelligence databases, allowing them to plan flight paths and strikes against Russian forces and tanks on the ground often at night.

In a discussion on March 7 at the California Institute of Technology, SpaceX president and COO Gwynne Shotwell said the company had been working for about six weeks to get landing rights to launch Starlink service in Ukraine, and Fedorov’s Feb. 26 served as the final go ahead. She said: “We had been working on trying to get permission — landing rights — to lay down capacity in Ukraine. We had been working with the Ukrainians for a month and a half or so… But then they tweeted. There’s our permission.”


Tesla and European Support


Tesla’s EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) employees assembled Tesla’s Powerwall units, a lithium-ion battery energy storage system that can provide backup power for Starlink terminals. Some of the Powerwall cables were assembled using scrap from Tesla’s new Gigafactory in Berlin, Germany, which received conditional approval to start production last month. Tesla also offered employees who are Ukrainian nationals up to three months of pay if they return to their home country to answer Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s calls for reservists to join the fight. Tesla did not have any operations in Ukraine when the invasion began.

Internet access deteriorated in Ukraine the first day Russian launched its invasion and has not fully recovered, though Starlink technology has enabled basic connectivity to stay online in most areas even throughout Russian shelling. Musk warned antennas could potentially be targets in Russian controlled airspace. He recommended camouflaging them and putting them as far away from people as possible. But so far, that hasn’t been an issue, Fedorov said, explaining that the terminals have been used in densely populated areas where there would be a lot of civilians anyway.


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