The eruption of the Hunga-Tonga-Hunga-Ha’apai volcano left the island of Tonga without internet after the submarine cable that connected to the network was damaged.
Communication problems have hindered rescue efforts in the area and the arrival of aid from abroad.
According to local authorities, the island could be without connection for a month, since the repair of the cable must be carried out from a boat.
The problem is that the vessels face an uncertain scenario, since a new telluric event in the area is not ruled out, a situation that could further delay the work to repair the cable.
Musk to the rescue
Due to this problem, Elon Musk offered to send Starlink terminals to the island of Tonga, to help restore internet access.
After the authorities reported that the internet service could return within a month, the tycoon asked on his Twitter account: “Could the people of Tonga let us know if it is important that SpaceX send the Starlink terminals?”
Musk also indicated that he needed a “clear confirmation” for his company’s terminals, explaining that it is “somewhat difficult” for the SpaceX team since they do not have enough satellites with laser links.
There are currently more than 1,650 Starlink satellites in orbit. The satellite internet network already offers coverage to 14 countries, including the United States, Canada, Australia and Chile.
It should be remembered that the Hunga-Tonga-Hunga-Ha’apai eruption reached 10 megatons and caused a tsunami that broke the island’s 827-kilometer-long submarine internet cable.