Gazing at satellitesBy Di, March 23 2023
When I was a kid, my father would drag us out of bed in the wee hours of the morning to watch a rocket launch, on our fuzzy little 9" black-and-white TV. They were momentous occasions. When I was 7, the Apollo 11 mission took us to the moon. I saw that happen! It was awesome.
For years after that, my father would point out satellites as they traveled across the night sky. It was amazing to see them out there. But that was about 50 years ago. Today there are so many satellites that you almost always see one. And with the new mega-satellite arrays being developed, that number is going to explode. SpaceX alone plans to launch more than 30,000 in the near future. While this will make huge advances possible in various technologies, it will also add to a new problem—satellite pollution.
With thousands of satellite arrays in orbit around the Earth, even the darkest night skies far from cities will be littered with them. Stargazing has always been wondrous for me, but I fear the satellites will ruin it. All I will see when I look to the heavens is our own selves blinking back at us.