Elon Musk denies SpaceX satellites are blocking space in wake of Chinese complaints about Tiangong’s near miss


Elon Musk has rejected claims that SpaceX’s satellites are taking on an excessive amount of room after China complained its Tiangong space station had suffered two near-misses.

The Tesla founder informed the Financial Times that there’s room for “tens of billions” of spacecraft to orbit the earth, including: “This is not some situation where we’re effectively blocking others in any way. We’ve not blocked anyone from doing anything, nor do we expect to.”

The feedback have been in response to a declare from Josef Aschbacher, head of the European Space Agency, that Musk was “making the rules” for the business space trade.

China not too long ago complained that its Tiangong space station had had two “close encounters” with SpaceX Starlink satellites this 12 months, forcing it to change course to keep away from a collision.

In a diplomatic notice introduced to the United Nations earlier this month, the Chinese delegation requested that the UN secretary common remind international locations of their “international responsibility for national activities in outer space … whether such activities are carried on by governmental agencies or by non-governmental entities”.

Musk confronted heavy criticism from Chinese Internet customers after the nation’s media reported particulars of the criticism earlier this week.

“Come out and explain the Starlink satellites, which have threatened the lives and health of our astronauts,” one individual commented on Weibo, China’s Twitter-like social media platform.

On Tuesday international ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian accused Washington of ignoring its treaty obligations to guard the protection of Chinese astronauts.

“The United States should take immediate measures to prevent the recurrence of such incidents, and adopt a responsible attitude to safeguard the lives of astronauts in orbit and the safe and stable operation of space facilities,” Zhao informed a daily press convention.

Musk’s non-public space firm SpaceX has launched nearly 1,900 satellites as half of the Starlink community and plans to deploy tens of 1000’s extra.

Musk is one of the highest-profile international buyers in China and he not too long ago stated Tesla’s Shanghai Gigafactory, which began operations in late 2019, is now producing extra automobiles than its manufacturing unit in Fremont, California.

In a gathering with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang in 2019, Musk stated he beloved China and needed to return to the nation extra typically. Li replied that he can be comfortable to offer Musk a “Chinese green card”.

In July, he praised China’s economic development and infrastructure as the Communist Party celebrated its centenary, tweeting: “the economic prosperity that China has achieved is truly amazing, especially in infrastructure! I encourage people to visit and see for themselves.”

But 2021 was additionally a tricky 12 months for Musk’s Tesla in China. In April, the company’s booth at the Shanghai Auto Show was targeted by a protester complaining about high quality issues with its automobiles. It recalled almost 300,000 cars in China two months later over safety fears. – South China Morning Post

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