Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai wants his agency approve SpaceX’s 15-month-old application to serve the U.S. with its proposed megaconstellation.
Planet and Spire, operators of the two largest commercial cubesat constellations in orbit, say they manage their fleets to prevent retired spacecraft from lingering in space beyond internationally accepted guidelines.
A U.S. Federal Communications Commission requirement that developers of non-geostationary-orbit (NGSO) satellite systems provide full coverage of the United States to get market access has prospective megaconstellation operators pitted against each other.
SpaceX closed out its most successful year to date Dec. 22 with the launch of 10 satellites for mobile satellite services operator Iridium, notching a personal best of 18 launches in a single year.
Telesat is some three to five months ahead of OneWeb in launching low-Earth orbit telecommunications satellites, and barring a surprise launch from SpaceX, will likely be the first new mega-constellation to put hardware into operation.
Satellites have been the option of last resort for telecommunication companies and their customers in the past decades, according to Renato Goodfellow, head of global satellite at BT Global Services.
Iridium Communications, in the first of what the company signaled could be many similar partnerships with new smallsat operators, has announced a collaborative agreement with a startup to expand its offerings in the emerging Internet of Things (IoT) market.