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SpaceX raising $500 million to help build satellite broadband network

Enlarge / SpaceX's first Starlink broadband satellites. (credit: Elon Musk ) SpaceX is raising $500 million from investors to help build its worldwide satellite broadband network, The Wall Street Journal reported today . The company run by Elon Musk has agreed on financing terms with existing shareholders and new investor Baillie Gifford & Co., who will pay $186 per share for new stock, valuing the company at $30.5 billion, according to Journal sources. SpaceX hasn't received the money yet but could announce the deal by the end of December, the Journal reported. The funding round would pay for initial costs but not the entire project, which the Journal report said could cost as much as $10 billion. We contacted SpaceX about the funding today but the company declined to comment. Read 6 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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FCC tells SpaceX it can deploy up to 11,943 broadband satellites

Enlarge (credit: Getty Images | Olena_T ) SpaceX today received US approval to deploy 7,518 broadband satellites, in addition to the 4,425 satellites that were approved eight months ago. The Federal Communications Commission voted to let SpaceX launch 4,425 low-Earth orbit satellites in March of this year . SpaceX separately sought approval for 7,518 satellites operating even closer to the ground, saying that these will boost capacity and reduce latency in heavily populated areas. That amounts to 11,943 satellites in total for SpaceX's Starlink broadband service. SpaceX "proposes to add a very-low Earth orbit (VLEO) NGSO non-geostationary satellite orbit constellation, consisting of 7,518 satellites operating at altitudes from 335km to 346km," the FCC said in the draft of the order that it approved unanimously today. The newly approved satellites would use frequencies between 37.5 and 42GHz for space-to-Earth transmissions and frequencies between 47.2 and 51.4GHz for Earth-to-space transmissions, the FCC said. Read 17 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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SpaceX lands Falcon 9 booster on Just Read The Instructions drone ship

SpaceX confirmed on Twitter this morning that it recovered the booster from the latest Falcon 9 launch. Shortly after launching from Vandenberg Air Force Base in Southern California at 7:39AM ET this morning, the booster stage landed on the Just Read The Instructions drone ship. The company will now try to catch the rocket’s fairing with a giant net attached to the ship Mr. Stevens. Despite challenging weather conditions, Falcon 9 first stage booster landed on Just Read the Instructions. — SpaceX (@SpaceX) July 25, 2018 SpaceX has become more adept at landing its booster rockets but it’s still a spectacle every time it happens. This landing is extra special as the winds were gusting around the time of the launch. The rocket company has so far been less successful with catching the payload shrouds. SpaceX’s high-speed recovery boat Mr. Steven took to the seas this time around with a larger net in the hopes of recovering the fairings. Reusing as much as possible is critical to SpaceX’s mission to lower the cost of space flight. Today’s launch was SpaceX’s seventh mission for the company’s client Iridium who contracted with SpaceX to launch 75 satellites into orbit. According to SpaceX, today’s payload of Iridium satellites so far deployed without an issue. SpaceX is contracted for one more launch with Iridium.

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SpaceX hyperloop pod competition winner breaks speed record

WARR Hyperloop has done it again. The engineering students from the Technical University of Munich won SpaceX’s hyperloop pod competition on Sunday for the third time. This year, WARR Hyperloop pulled off the win when their self-propelled pod reached a top speed of more than 290 miles per hour, a new record for the competition. The pod traveled 50% faster than WARR Hyperloop’s winning entry in the previous SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition held in August 2017. In the first competition, held in January 2017, WARR’s winning pod traveled just 58 mph. That’s progress. The event was hosted, as it has since the beginning, by SpaceX and its founder Elon Musk at the company’s Hawthorne, California headquarters. The Boring Company , another Musk business pursuit, provided additional support this year. The competition this year illustrates the evolution and advancements in hyperloop technology. For instance, in the previous two Hyperloop Pod competitions, student teams had the option of accelerating their pod down the test track with support from a SpaceX-made vehicle called a “pusher.” This year, all pods had to be self-propelled. SpaceX also added another sub- competition focused on levitation  technology. In this challenge the pods had to maintain alignment with the test track while hovering above it for an extended period of time. We're excited to announce that our team WARR Hyperloop is the winner of the 2018 SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition!!!!! We managed to go almost 50% faster than last year, reaching a final speed of 467 km/h (290 mph)! We'd like to sincerely thank all our sponsors! pic.twitter.com/YpPTURnHp5 — WARR Hyperloop (@WARR_Hyperloop) July 23, 2018 WARR Hyperloop was one of three teams to make it to the finals—a 1.25-kilometer Hyperloop test track adjacent to SpaceX’s headquarters. Delft University from the Netherlands and EPFLoop of Switzerland also made it to the finals

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