New telecoms satellites will degrade our view of the cosmos


Astronomers are becoming increasingly concerned about the growing number of satellites that are lighting up the night sky by reflecting sunlight to Earth. In 2022, the prototype communications satellite BlueWalker 3 was launched and it is now the brightest commercial satellite ever – outshining almost every star in the sky. And to make matters worse, communications satellites like BlueWalker 3 broadcast microwave signals that can interfere with radio astronomy.

To talk about the threats to astronomy posed by satellites I am joined down the line by the radio astronomer Mike Peel, who is at Imperial College London and Jeremy Tregloan-Reed of Chile’s University of Atacama, who studies the cosmos using visible light.

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