I just viewed a video of the first batch of 60 STARLINK satellites at these links:
From what I could find the STARLINK system is going to eventually have 2800 satellites @ 710 miles, 1600 @ 340 miles, & 7500 @ 210 miles. If this is what the first batch of 60 looks like what are the night skies going to look like when there are 12,000 of them up there? Will there be a negative impact on astrophotography?
So you've done some research that gives more context to the situation, seeing there is planned 3 orbital shell layers!!
It is a good question. As someone who regular intentionally seeks to image and capture satellites in video, I still am wondering.
I caught the Starlink sats as well on video, posted in this thread:
If I have another chance soon, I'll intentionally try to figure out the general magnitude via comparing with stars at extinguishing/appearing given altered exposure settings of the video....
From the footage I shot, it looks like they were magnitude ~4.5-5, at 450km altitude..
Note they are all bunched together until they individual space themselves apart in the orbital plane they were launched in (final placement)...
It's easier to be disturbed by a bunch than one mag. 5 satellite passing over...
I'd say the lower orbits will be brighter, but have fewer reflection timing and will pass across faster. The higher orbits will be fainter but take longer to pass through.
Since something of this scale hasn't been done before, it is hard to say. The key operative factor is not the typical brightness but the scale of numbers that raises the chances of "photobombing."
Consider there were only 72 Iridium comm satellites, at ~780km. They usually were at ~7-8 magnitude normally. A few were good for "Iridium Flare" events regularly.... Now consider the sheer numbers of Starlinks, plus the other large constellations the competitors are going to put up there(One Web, Telesat, Amazon)...
We'll see. Like it or not.
The good thing is all these objects are predictable and with adequate planning one can take images with certainty there will be no stragglers passing through a shot at a given time/location (one point of the website Calsky.com).
With airplanes, one doesn't have that option.....