Now that its first batch of next generation satellites is in orbit and operational, mobile satellite services provider Iridium is preparing deorbit procedures for its legacy fleet of low-Earth orbit satellites that launched in the late 1990s.
CEO Matt Desch said the next batch of 10 Iridium Next satellites is scheduled for launch June 29.
Iridium announced Jan. 31 it has purchased an additional Falcon 9 launch from SpaceX that the satellite services company will share with a German-U.S. Earth science mission.
A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket blasted off from Vandenberg Air Force Base, California, Jan. 14 and successfully delivered ten Iridium Communications satellites into polar orbit.
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration has issued a launch license to SpaceX for the upcoming return to flight of its Falcon 9, although its planned launch has been delayed by at least one day.
SpaceX has postponed Falcon 9's return-t0-flight launch until early January, the Hawthorne, California-based company announced today (Dec. 7).
Satellite fleet operator EchoStar Corp. on Nov. 23 said its EchoStar 23 tri-band telecommunications satellite for Brazil is expected to launch Jan. 8 or Jan. 9 aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Kennedy Space Center, Florida.
The agency providing U.S. government access to Iridium’s global constellation of mobile communications satellites on Nov. 9 urged other nations to join the program to take advantage of its fixed-price, unlimited-access feature.
Mobile satellite services provider Iridium Communications expects to complete negotiations with its lenders and its satellite manufacturer by the end of the year ro loosen payment obligations to ride out the delay in the launch of its second-generation constellation.
The commercial company with arguably the most at stake in a quick and successful return to flight of SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket on Sept. 8 gave a ringing endorsement of the launch-service provider even as SpaceX founder Elon Musk issued statements saying the investigation will be complicated.
Veteran satellite industry analyst Chris Quilty says SpaceX could be looking at a six-month stand down if its accident investigation reveals that internal tankage or plumbing on the Falcon caused the Sept. 1 pre-flight failure.
Shares in some satellite operators who were customers of SpaceX fell sharply Sept. 1 after a Falcon 9 rocket was destroyed in a launch pad incident.
The apparent explosion of a SpaceX Falcon 9 launch vehicle during a static fire test Sept. 1 could put into jeopardy the sale of one satellite operator.
Mobile satellite services provider Iridium Communications on July 28 said it had opened negotiations with its lenders and its satellite manufacturer to reduce or delay Iridium payments in the event Iridium’s Aireon air traffic surveillance affiliate cannot make its scheduled payment to Iridium.
Mobile satellite services provider Iridium Communications on June 14 said the launch of the first 10 second-generation Iridium Next satellites had slipped by another month, to Sept. 12 at the earliest, because of bottlenecks at the Vandenberg Air Force Base spaceport.