Starlink has Set Up a Satellite Base in the Irish Sea


Starlink, the space internet mega project that was created in 2015 by the billionaire Elon Musk is setting up a “ground station” on a tiny island in the Irish Sea. The project is run by Musk’s space transportation firm. It is set to help the company release internet from satellites in Low-Earth orbit to homes and offices.

The Telegraph first reported about the Starlink Isle of Man ground station late last month and it can be seen on the official website. Furthermore, according to the government of the Isle of Man, the internet company has been working with local communications provider Bluewave. The two companies even licensed several of the island’s spectrums.

The Irish company Bluewave has a ground station situated in the capital of Douglas. The station can be spotted from Google Maps. Moreover, Bluewave has acquired the site last year from SES Satellite Leasing. Furthermore, according to a local source related to the satellite industry, these are structural, weatherproof enclosures that protect a radar antenna, which sends and receives data transmissions.

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“There is a nearly new vacant base station array here linked directly into data centers,”. Said a source who works in the Isle of Man’s tech industry, who asked to remain anonymous as they’re not directly involved with the Starlink project. The source added that it has “an excellent horizon scan because being surrounded by sea it means there is nothing in the way.”

“Then, of course, the Isle of Man is a low tax jurisdiction so [there is] very little overhead,” they added. “Plus the nation has an adequacy agreement with the EU for GDPR compliance. All this makes the island a good place for satellite or data-related services.”

Starlink might need more space

The Isle of Man is a British Crown dependency that sits in the middle of the Irish Sea. Starlink already has bases in Buckinghamshire and Cornwall in England. Additionally, the Isle of Man base will allow the company to provide blanket internet coverage across Britain.

“You can assume they’ll need lots of ground stations, in lots of places, to ensure uninterrupted coverage,” Craig Moffett, an analyst at research firm MoffettNathanson, told CNBC.

“In conclusion, the satellites aren’t yet equipped with fiber interlinks. So for now, they need to be in constant contact with the ground. That requires a tremendous number of ground stations,” Moffett added