Elon Musk’s space technologies company SpaceX has asked the US military to take over the financing for the Starlink satellite internet service in Ukraine and said it can no longer cover its operating costs.
Starlink internet satellites, produced by Elon Musk’s SpaceX, have enabled the military to continue communication even when internet networks are destroyed, since they arrived in Ukraine last spring.
Nearly 20 thousand Starlink satellite units have been donated to Ukraine so far.
“The operation cost SpaceX $80 million and will exceed $100 million by the end of the year,” said Elon Musk.
WARNING TO PENTAGON
SpaceX has warned the Pentagon that it may stop funding the service in Ukraine unless it pays tens of millions of dollars a month.
Documents obtained by CNN show that last month, Musk’s SpaceX sent a letter to the Pentagon saying it could not continue to fund the Starlink service as it stands.
The letter also requested that the Pentagon take over financing for Starlink’s military use.
“We are not in a position to donate more terminals to Ukraine or fund existing terminals for an indefinite period,” SpaceX’s director of government sales told the Pentagon in a letter.