Opinion

No, You Cannot Bolt A SpaceX Starlink Antenna To Your Car

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying the company’s Crew Dragon spacecraft is launched on NASAs SpaceX Crew-2 mission to the International Space Station.

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying the company’s Crew Dragon spacecraft is launched on NASAs SpaceX Crew-2 mission to the International Space Station.
Photo: Joel Kowsky/NASA (Getty Images)

One motorist in California was ticketed for attaching a satellite dish bolted to the hood of his Toyota Prius that was designed to look like one of SpaceX’s Starlink antennas. This is a good reminder that, no, you cannot do that.

The California Highway Patrol of Antelope Valley posted two images on Facebook that were credited to have been captured by Officer T. Caton. It read:

“Sir I stopped you today for that visual obstruction on your hood. Does it not block your view while driving? Motorist: Only when I make right turns….”

Yes, it is in fact illegal to mount a satellite dish to the hood of your vehicle, obstructing your view under section 26708(a)(2) of the California Vehicle Code. You also may not hang things from your rear view mirror, mount a GPS or cell phone in an unapproved location on your windshield, or display a handicap placard while the vehicle is in motion under this section. It’s about safety folks. These are the real stories of the Highway Patrol. Safe travels everyone.

As a little reminder, Starlink is one of SpaceX’s many projects. This one is designed to build a network of thousands of satellites that will ideally bring high-speed internet to consumers around the world. The Starlink Kit has four components: the user terminal or antenna, a tripod mount, WiFi router, and a power supply; the beta program costs $99 per month. If you want rooftop mounting, you can nab that for a little extra.

But you cannot actually mount it to your car. I know, it would be nice to have access to high-speed internet no matter where you go. But obstructing your vision? Not the way to go.


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