SpaceX’s newest fleet of satellites is tumbling out of orbit after being struck by a solar storm.
Forty-nine small satellites were launched on February 3 from Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
SpaceX now reports that a geomagnetic storm last Friday made the atmosphere denser, which increased the drag on the Starlink satellites, which will cause them to fall out of orbit.
Up to 40 of those satellites have either re-entered the atmosphere and burned up, or are on the verge of doing so.
The satellites hit by the solar storm were in a temporary position.
SpaceX deliberately launches them into this unusually low orbit so that any duds can quickly reenter the atmosphere and pose no threat to other spacecraft.
There is no danger from these newly falling satellites, either in orbit or on the ground, according to the company.
Each satellite weighs less than 575 pounds
There are still close to 2,000 Starlink satellites orbiting Earth and providing internet service.