SATELLITES have only been around for seven decades but they're now integral to our way of life.
But just how many satellites are there in space, and what do they do?
1) How many satellites are there in space?
Humanity has been launching satellites into space since the 1950s.
On 1 January 2021 there were 6,542 satellites in orbit.
While that may sound like a lot, only half of them were active.
The rest are "dead" satellites that are no longer in use.
2) How many Starlink satellites are there and how many will SpaceX place in orbit?
Space is only going to get more crowded, with the number of satellites in orbit expected to rise by 500 per cent within the next decade.
One of the biggest players in the game is SpaceX, the California rocket company owned by billionaire Elon Musk.
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Starlink is a satellite project launched by SpaceX in 2015.
The firm sends its satellites up in batches of 60 at a time and has deployed more than 1,700 into orbit so far.
Musk intends to put 12,000 satellites into Earth's orbit over next decade, possibly rising to 42,000 in future.
The "mega-constellation" will eventually be able to beam internet coverage to anywhere on the planet, according to SpaceX.
The California company says its network will provide users with high-speed, low-latency internet coverage.
Latency is the time it takes to send data from one point to the next.
Because Starlink sats are 60 times closer to Earth than most satellites, SpaceX's WiFi latency is lower than traditional satellite internet.
They're launched from Cape Carnaveral in Florida atop unmanned Falcon 9 rockets, which are also built by SpaceX.
3) What are satellites used for?
Satellites are used for a range of tasks, from the mundane to top-secret spy operations.
The orbiting technology is most frequently used for telecommunication, connecting mobile phone users across the globe.
Other satellites are used to track weather or take pictures of space, other plants and distant galaxies.
Spy agencies use satellites to take covert imagery of their foes, while militaries use them to direct personnel on the battlefield.
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In other news, Nasa's Perseverance rover has created breathable oxygen.
Nasa recently completed the first controlled flight on another planet following the lift-off of its Mars helicopter-drone, Ingenuity.
Nasa has baffled space fans by releasing an image of what appears to be a rainbow on Mars.
And, the mystery surrounding what looks like giant spiders on the surface of Mars may finally have been solved.
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