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OneWeb files for bankruptcy, blames COVID-19 | FierceWireless Mar 2020
"OneWeb, whose mission was to bring connectivity to everyone everywhere, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection just about a week after launching its latest round of satellites. The move wasn’t entirely unexpected, as reports surfaced before the March 21 launch that a bankruptcy filing might be in the offing. In the end, the company blamed the coronavirus for upending the markets so much that it couldn’t obtain needed financing."
FierceWireless  OneWeb  NGSO  LEO  MEO 
9 days ago by pierredv
UK, 'Five Eyes' & the Future of SatNav & PNT | RNTF, Aug 2019
The United Kingdom has a golden opportunity with this initiative to be a world leader in PNT.

To capture this title, they must be innovative and not just field a British version of what the US, Russia, Europe, and China have already done. The UK must focus on users, reliability, resilience, and affordability.
RNTF  PNT  GNSS  GPS  UK  LEO 
august 2019 by pierredv
LEO Survival of the Fittest…or the Smartest? - NSR
"Financial “fitness” can be thought of as the funding – either self or outside – that is essential for breaking the barriers to entry and for survival in the short-term. “Smartness” can be considered as the right target market, pricing strategy, capability and repeatability to ensure long-term sustainability. So, when it comes to LEO HTS Constellation survival, what is the answer to the question: Fit or smart?"

"A grand total of almost $48 B [in capex] must be invested to deploy all constellations as they are currently planned."

"From this assessment, based on the funding status and CAPEX to funding ratio, OneWeb is the “fittest” player today. That said, even though Amazon does not have any announced funding at this stage, NSR believes their deep pockets ensure that this will not be a challenge in the launch of Project Kuiper."

"... revenue estimates are a different game altogether. NSR forecasts $43.6B in overall Non-GEO revenues over the 2018 – 2028 period. "

"To compensate for higher than anticipated expenses during the early stages, OneWeb has shifted their short -term priority towards higher revenue generating applications. "

"As one of the biggest constellations planned, SpaceX’s constellation is also associated with the highest expenses. With over $1B in funding raised so far, it makes up a mere 7% of the total estimated CAPEX. ... Starlink’s architecture does allow SpaceX to offer high speed Internet to markets with high price tolerance. But will the market size be big enough to support SpaceX’s long-term plans?"

"The latest news from Telesat indicates it will hedge its bets with a hybrid architecture."

"Short-term “fitness” remains the biggest question for LeoSat as they work towards lowering the overall system CAPEX."
NSR  LEO  NGSO  market-research  OneWeb  SpaceX  Telesat  LeoSat  Amazon 
july 2019 by pierredv
Sorry LEOs, but FPAs Have No Incentive to Go Low-Cost - NSR Dec 2018
"According to NSR’s Commercial Satellite Ground Segment, 3rd Edition report, antennas will generate $44.9 billion cumulative revenues in the next 10 years. Requirements are wide and varied, from low-cost, fixed parabolic dishes for DTH (can be as cheap as $10 USD), to highly sophisticated antennas for mobility or Earth Stations that can cost several $100k USD. Consequently, antenna vendors adapt their products to the most lucrative markets. LEO constellations have a particular set of requirements that favor FPAs, especially in the low-end markets, but are FPA incentives aligned with LEO Constellations?"

"Today, SAC in Consumer Broadband is around $700-1,000 USD where the modem might be in the $300 range, antenna itself around $50, installation contributing $100 and the rest being marketing, credit validation and others. Consequently, an FPA priced in the $200-300 range could compete with traditional parabolics considering lower installation and marketing costs (product placement). Even considering these factors, prices for FPAs are still far from this benchmark, and only the architectures that have no other option (LEOs, Aero) will choose FPAs in the short to medium term."

"It will be impossible to see FPAs beating low-end parabolics in a direct cost comparison but, when including other elements of SAC, the equation is not so unfavorable. With continuous technology development, greater traction from LEOs and stagnation in verticals like Aero, we could see consumer-grade FPAs by the mid-2020s, at the earliest."
NSR  antennas  LEO  business  satellite  broadband  aviation 
december 2018 by pierredv
Antenna builder ThinKom makes push for constellation market - SpaceNews.com Oct 2018
"ThinKom tested a phased array antenna with SES in August, practicing links with O3b satellites in medium Earth orbit as they rose over the horizon and then tracking them for 30 minutes each.

"Last month, ThinKom and Telesat announced plans to test an antenna with a Telesat prototype satellite in low Earth orbit (LEO) and to collaborate on business-grade terminals for Telesat’s planned 120-satellite LEO constellation. "

"The absence of such flat-panel antennas, as constellations start launching and high-throughput geostationary satellites grow in number, has satellite operators “all pretty much desperate to see somebody bring a solution to market,” according to Chris Quilty, president of Quilty Analytics. "

"ThinKom is best known for its ThinAir Ku3030 antennas that inflight connectivity provider Gogo builds into its 2Ku airplane Wi-Fi terminals. ... Bill Milroy, ThinKom’s chairman and chief technical officer, said his company intends to use the same phased array technology it has used for antennas on aircraft "

"SES is attempting to cultivate commercially viable flat-panel antennas for O3b mPower, its next-generation constellation, having contracted with Viasat, Alcan Systems and Isotropic Systems last year to build electronically steered antennas. "

"ThinKom’s approach differs from SES’s other three partners in that its antennas don’t use electronic steering, despite being relatively flat. The aeronautical antenna it is testing with SES is 20 centimeters thick and uses mechanical systems to track satellites. "

"Whereas a ThinKom antenna requires around half a second to switch satellites, an electronically steered antenna has the potential to switch in microseconds"

"ThinKom is targeting $10,000 for enterprise, or business-grade, terminals. ... For consumer terminals, ThinKom is targeting “sub-$1,000” prices."
ThinKom  SES  MEO  NGSO  satellite  antennas  Telesat  O3b  LEO 
october 2018 by pierredv
Can OneWeb Cross the Valley of Death? - NSR Sep 2018
Blog doesn't answer the question the headline poses - but hints No.

"OneWeb has accomplished a significant feat by raising the most funding – $1.7 billion – offering it a tremendous benefit over other similar LEO constellations. However, despite this notable amount, the question remains – is it enough to support and sustain this mega constellation, or is it just buzz and hype?"

"NSR considers OneWeb is currently placed between the technology transfer and product launch phases and will soon enter the said valley [of death]."

"NSR estimated a total CAPEX of over $5 Billion for OneWeb- which is $2 billion over the originally expected total CAPEX of around $3 billion. Considering this CAPEX value, a total available funding amount of $1.7 billion to date and a valuation of capacity as well as service revenue streams from various applications, NSR estimates a negative ROI over the next 10 years, which is attenuated further with the recently announced (and later retracted) confusing news of a $6 billion associated CAPEX."

"The dismissal of landing right requests (such is the case in Russia) also poses a significant threat to the success of OneWeb, as does the heavy recurring cost of fleet replenishment every 7-10 years."

"Market readiness, however, is a probable barrier for OneWeb."
NSR  OneWeb  business  satellite  NGSO  LEO 
september 2018 by pierredv
The FSS sector and the LEO-GEO stalemate - SpaceNews.com Sep 2018
"Orders for traditional geostationary satellites have fallen precipitously over the past three years. Industry counts show orders dropped from 26 GEO orders in 2014, to 15 in 2016 and seven in 2017. Most observers don’t believe 2018 will be much better. There are many reasons for the decline, ranging from a plateau in satellite video distribution to rapidly evolving high-throughput satellite (HTS) and digital payload technology that has created overcapacity in some segments and makes operators anxious about ordering long-life satellites that may soon be obsolete. These risks might be manageable if not for the planned low Earth orbit (LEO) constellations, with their promises of lower pricing, amplifying pricing and capacity concerns."

"The lack of clarity over the satellite industry’s future has led to an incredible standoff. On the one hand, the satellite industry is in a situation where investment in geostationary satellites is stalled due to uncertainties over the long-term industry outlook, particularly when LEO constellations enter. On the other hand, investment in LEO constellations is stalled due to shorter-term concerns about the availability of affordable consumer hardware."

"Will a LEO antenna manufacturer emerge to meet the performance and price targets needed to break this deadlock or will there be a realization that the technical challenges are insurmountable? "
LEO  GEO  opinion  NGSO  satellite  antennas  Armand-Musey 
september 2018 by pierredv
Kepler, Phasor test flat panel antenna with LEO cubesat - SpaceNews.com Sep 2018
"Startups Kepler Communications and Phasor said Sept. 10 that they successfully demonstrated a link between Kepler’s cubesat and a Phasor flat panel antenna."

The test, according to the companies, “represents the first example of a wideband [low-Earth orbit] satellite to have been auto-acquired, auto-tracked, and communicated with, by a commercial flat panel, electronically-steerable antenna.”

"the tests show the company should be able to achieve a 10 Mbps downlink, 10 Mbps uplink connection with a 30-square-centimeter Phasor antenna."
SpaceNews  Kepler  Phasor  satellite  NGSO  antennas  LEO 
september 2018 by pierredv
Orbcomm - Wikipedia
ORBCOMM (NASDAQ: ORBC) is an American company that offers industrial Internet of things (IoT) and machine to machine (M2M)[1] communications solutions designed to track, monitor, and control fixed and mobile assets in markets including transportation, heavy equipment, maritime, oil and gas, utilities and government. The company provides hardware devices, modems, web applications and data services delivered over multiple satellite and cellular networks.
Wikipedia  LEO  satellite 
september 2018 by pierredv
Telesat selects Thales-Maxar team for LEO constellation design work - SpaceNews.com Jul 2018
"Telesat on July 30 selected Thales Alenia Space and Maxar Technologies’ Space Systems Loral division to collaborate on the design of its low Earth orbit broadband satellite constellation."

"Telesat’s schedule for manufacturing and service activation has slipped by about a year. The company now plans to have the constellation in service in 2022, instead of 2021 as originally envisioned."

"Telesat says its LEO constellation will offer multiple terabits of secure throughput with latency low enough to rival fiber. Targeted applications include broadband to aircraft, boats and land vehicles, corporate networks, governments and rural connectivity. "

"Thales is the manufacturer for the 81 LEO satellites in Iridium Next, integrating the spacecraft with Northrop Grumman, and has a study contract with startup LeoSat for its proposed constellation of 84 broadband satellites. Maxar’s MDA division in Canada is a supplier to OneWeb for the company’s 900-satellite constellation. "
SpaceNews  Telesat  space  satellite  broadband  LEO  business  Thales  Maxar 
july 2018 by pierredv
Antenna-makers Produce Multi-band Antennas To Serve Inflight Broadband | Aviation Week Jul 2018
"In June electronically-steered antenna (ESA) developer Phasor announced a partnership with Astronics AeroSat to produce scalable, dual-beam ESA-based aeronautical terminals that will operate seamlessly with existing geostationary (GEO) satellites and under-development non-geosynchronous satellites such as low Earth orbit (LEO) constellations."

“Our ESA aperture has the ability to be single-beam or dual-beam, so you can have a second, independent beam pointing at a different satellite, which gives all kinds of flexibility,” says Helfgott. “You can look at two satellites at the same time or, with the LEOs, you can do a make-before-break where you track a LEO satellite and create a second channel for a different LEO satellite traveling in a different direction.”

"A few days before the Phasor/Astronics announcement, ThinKom Solutions, whose mechanically steered antennas form the basis of Gogo’s 2Ku inflight connectivity service, said its technology is now “fully interoperable” with GEO, LEO and MEO (medium-Earth orbit) satellites."
AviationWeek  Phasor  antennas  satellite  broadband  GEO  LEO  ThinKom 
july 2018 by pierredv
Boeing constellation stalled, SpaceX constellation progressing - SpaceNews.com
"Boeing is not actively building any satellites for the constellation it proposed to U.S. regulators two years ago, an industry executive said June 25.

“We have a filing but we haven’t really started developing it yet, so I would call that not really moving forward,” Dawn Harms, vice president of global sales and marketing at Boeing Satellite Systems International, said at the CASBAA Satellite Industry Forum here. "

"SpaceX anticipates starting service with around 800 satellites in 2020 or 2021. "
SpaceNews  space  LEO  NGSO  satellite  Boeing  SpaceX 
june 2018 by pierredv
July 2018 - Evolutionary Antenna Tech Inspires the Future of Satellite Constellations | Via Satellite June 2018
"Following seven years of development, Phasor’s electronically steered antennas began testing in commercial use cases this year. These antennas are barely 2.5 centimeters thick, and are designed to be conformal in order to look at a wider angle 180 degrees, with dual-beam technology making them LEO and GEO interoperable."

"LeoSat, for example, sees itself as a disruptor in the defense market — which has traditionally relied upon GEO systems."

"By their own admission, Phasor will never be at the bottom of the food chain. And, while the super yachts of the world number in the thousands, fishing boats number in the millions"

"Isotropic Systems aims to be one of the leaders working to connect smaller maritime vessels and flight routes in India, Africa and Latin America. One way to achieve that, they believe, is by reducing the price point of terminal systems by 70 to 90 percent."
satellite  antennas  C-Com  Phasor  LEO  GEO  AvL  LeoSat  ThinKom  aviation  maritime  IsotropicSystems 
june 2018 by pierredv
June 2018 - Will LEO Kickstart the Asian Broadband Market? | Via Satellite Jun 2018
"In terms of demand, Asia leads the way in satellite broadband. It's purely a numbers game and Asia certainly has the numbers — as long as they refer to population and households, that is. If referring to U.S. dollar figures, then it's a different story, one that has the United States as the protagonist. According to a Northern Sky Research (NSR) market forecast, North America is driving revenues in terms of subscribers. Despite Asia having a much larger population, it really boils down to economics and, comparatively, disposable income levels in Asia are not as high as that of the United States. "

"When considering the price point, the magic number that unlocks the barrier holding back satellite changes country to country. Satellite needs to match fiber, and both need to be at a much lower price.

"In the United States, it's $60, which is still high, however, people are willing to pay that premium. Comparatively, in the Philippines, for example, a fiber connection costs around $50 a month. But looking at the mass markets, the price will have to go down to around $10 to $15 – and this will still be challenging," says Del Rosario. "

“If these [LEO] constellations are manufactured efficiently and launched on time, if the ground terminals are priced at $150-300 per unit, if they get market access to the countries they’re targeting, and if they drastically reduce the price to the consumer, say to $10-15, then the impact will be huge. But there are a lot of ‘ifs’ riding on this. Getting all this right, then yes, they will hit Asia’s mainstream market, and that is huge,” explains Del Rosario.
ViaSatellite  NSR  LEO  business  economics 
june 2018 by pierredv
Comtech, Kepler to Drive Rapidly Deployable LEO Comms - Via Satellite - June 2018
"Comtech EF Data, a subsidiary within Comtech Telecommunications’ Commercial Solutions segment, and Kepler Communications, a nano-satellite telecommunications company, have announced a collaboration to advance rapidly deployable, low-cost, low-latency communications via Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellites and ground station infrastructure equipment.

Kepler’s first Ku-band LEO satellite, Kipp, was launched on Jan. 19, enabling data offload services to remote communities and maritime markets. Kipp is the first in a planned constellation of up to 140 LEO satellites that will provide real-time global connectivity by 2022. "
Kepler  Comtech  LEO  satellite  NGSO 
june 2018 by pierredv
How Global Eagle and Telesat Aim to Bridge Mobility Gaps - Via Satellite - June 2018
In mid-May, news surfaced that In-Flight Entertainment and Connectivity (IFEC) provider Global Eagle will facilitate Telesat in designing and testing its Low Earth Orbit (LEO) constellation. This tie-up, which effectively made Global Eagle the first IFEC player to announce a collaboration with Telesat, followed a comprehensive review of planned Non-Geostationary-Orbit (NGSO) constellations.
ViaSatellite  Telesat  GlobalEagle  LEO  NGSO  satellite 
june 2018 by pierredv
DARPA asks industry to develop small, secure military satellites to operate in low-Earth orbit (LEO) - Apr 2018
"U.S. military researchers are asking for industry's help in developing a constellation of small, secure, and affordable military satellites that not only are able to operate in low-Earth orbit (LEO), but also that capitalize on modern commercial satellite technologies.... the Blackjack program to develop SWaP-optimized military communications and surveillance satellites designed to operate in LEO."

"The Blackjack program seeks to develop enabling technologies for a global high-speed network backbone in LEO that enables networked, resilient, and persistent military payloads that provide infinite over-the-horizon sensing, signals, and communications capabilities."

"The Blackjack program has three primary objectives:
-1- develop payload and mission-level autonomy software with on-orbit distributed decision processors that can operate autonomously with on-orbit data processing, and perform shared tasks on-orbit;
-2- use advanced commercial manufacturing for military payloads and the spacecraft bus, including high-rate manufacturing using commercial off-the-shelf (COTS)-like parts, reduced screening and acceptance testing for individual spacecraft, and reduced expectations for spacecraft life; and
-2- demonstrating satellite payloads in LEO that operate on par with current GEO systems with the spacecraft at costs of less than $6 million per satellite."

"The goal is to develop a 60-to-200-satellite constellation operating at altitudes of between 310.7 miles and 807.8 miles"
DARPA  LEO  satellite  DoD 
may 2018 by pierredv
Non-GEO Constellations: Surviving the Disruption - Northern Sky Research - May 2018
"The main industry segments most affected by Non-GEO constellations are HTS Communications, IoT and Earth Observation (EO). ... The main industry segments most affected by Non-GEO constellations are HTS Communications, IoT and Earth Observation (EO). Each of these segments presents its own set of challenges and therefore different barriers to success. NSR’s Satellite Constellations: A Critical Assessment report investigates for the first time what guarantees success for LEO constellations within these three segments and the associated disruption on the industry."

"higher revenue requires a higher market share, which further requires low latency and higher coverage. That is the main value proposition of mega-constellations. However, the bigger the constellation, the higher the capital investment needed, and the higher the complexity of manufacturing with (because of their architecture) higher replenishment cost."

"The new Non-GEO constellations are expected to cause the biggest disruption in the HTS segment, conspicuously in Consumer Broadband and Backhaul/Enterprise verticals."

"these new LPWAN IoT constellations, despite offering the highest innovative disruption value, are not likely to have a significant impact on the overall satellite industry - financially, contributing just over 2% of overall NGEO revenues by 2027."

"A combination of low revenues and insufficient market capture will restrain at least one EO constellation from closing its business case."

"New IoT constellations such as Hiber, Astrocast and Kepler have a unique business case based on providing low cost, low power IoT solutions. This market is currently addressed by companies like Sigfox and LoRA on the terrestrial side and – to a limited extent – Iridium, Globalstar and Orbcomm on the satellite side."
NSR  market-research  satellite  space  business  LEO  NGSO  IoT  EO  EarthObservation 
may 2018 by pierredv
SpaceDataHighway Achieves 10,000 Successful Laser Connections - Via Satellite - May 2018
"The SpaceDataHighway system, a public-private partnership between the European Space Agency (ESA) and Airbus, has achieved 10,000 successful laser connections. The reliability rate has reached 99.8 percent, and during the first one and a half years of routine operations, these successful connections have downloaded more than 500 terabytes of data."

"The system’s satellites are designed to lock on to low-orbiting satellites via laser and collect their data as they travel in Low Earth Orbit (LEO) scanning the Earth. From its position in Geostationary Earth Orbit (GEO), the SpaceDataHighway acts as a relay, transmitting the large quantities of data down to Earth in near-real time, at a speed of 1.8 Gbit per second."

"Each day, the SpaceDataHighway is able to relay up to 40 terabytes of data acquired by observation satellites, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV), or aircraft to Earth."
ViaSatellite  space  Communications  ESA  Airbus  reliability  optical-communications  LEO  GEO 
may 2018 by pierredv
Internet for the masses not a focus for Kymeta, Phasor - SpaceNews.com May 2018
"Speaking at the Applied Innovation Conference here May 10, representatives from Kymeta and Phasor said their antennas are not currently being designed for consumer-focused satellite internet."

Jeff Foust: "Representatives of Kymeta and Phasor said that, despite interest in consumer satellite broadband services proposed by companies like OneWeb and SpaceX, they're focused on business and government markets instead, which they see as more lucrative. "

"Other companies like London-based Isotropic Systems and Alcan Systems of Darmstadt, Germany, are building electronically steered antennas with consumer broadband in mind, but those will take more time to reach the market. Isotropic and Alcan are both targeting 2019 releases of sub-$1,000 antennas. Kymeta and Phasor antennas, in contrast, have starting costs of tens of thousands of dollars. "

"Brad Grady, a senior analyst at Northern Sky Research, said his firm forecasts 1.8 million electronically steered, flat-panel antennas to be shipped between 2017 and 2027, with low-Earth orbit (LEO) constellations driving 88 percent of demand. ... Of the 1.8 million terminals to ship, 90 percent will be for broadband access and network backhaul, but will only comprise 30 percent of all revenue, according to the firm. Grady said antennas for inflight connectivity are likely to produce the largest chunk of revenues. "

"Hadsall said Kymeta has been producing 70-centimeter Ku-band antennas since production began in October, and has delivered antennas to 23 customers around the world. ... Helfgott likened Phasor’s focus to that of LeoSat, a broadband startup designing a LEO constellation optimized for enterprise and other such deep-pocketed customers. "
Kymeta  Phasor  satellite  antennas  Alcan  IsotropicSystems  NSR  LEO 
may 2018 by pierredv
April 2018 - EO from LEO: Earth Observation Going Mainstream | Via Satellite april 2018
"NewSpace has largely put the idea of one-off satellites into the rearview mirror. Now the sector seems to be pushing the idea of a one-off constellation behind us as well."

"A decade ago, it took about $1 billion and 10 years to launch a constellation. Today, the advent of nanosatellites has cut that down to around $100 million and three years — still significant."
EO  LEO  remote-sensing  opinion 
may 2018 by pierredv
Telesat comes out against C-band proposal, girds for spectrum fight - SpaceNews.com May 2018
"Fleet operator Telesat, originally undecided about a joint-use spectrum plan put forward by Intelsat, Intel and SES, is turning against the plan because of how participants would be compensated."

“As it stands, unless we can be persuaded that these proceeds are in fact going to be distributed in an equitable way, we are going to oppose this and will oppose it vigorously,” Goldberg said during a May 3 earnings call.

"Telesat’s biggest growth initiative is the preparation of a constellation of 117 low-Earth orbiting satellites for high-speed global broadband services. The first, a prototype from Surrey Satellite Technology Limited, is in orbit to test technologies and service provision ahead of a larger constellation. Goldberg declined to estimate the total cost of the constellation, ..."

"Even with those resources, Goldberg said Telesat will likely need additional investors or partners to realize the constellation."
SpaceNews  Telesat  satellite  Intelsat  Intel  SES  NGSO  LEO  commerce 
may 2018 by pierredv
Satellite Constellations: A Critical Assessment - Northern Sky Research Apr 2018
From the email, "LEO-HTS Constellations Present Great Promise but Challenging Business Cases"

From graphic, studied following constellations:
LeoSat
Telesat
SES mPower (aka O3b)
OneWeb
SpaceX

"NSR predicts two, out of the five Non-GEO HTS constellations analyzed, do not have a viable business case and will not be sustainable, if launched. The remaining three will generate 12% of overall satcom market revenues over the next decade. Costly systems and replenishment cycles, matched against funding challenges, demand questions, and extraordinary technical and regulatory complexity, will separate contenders from pretenders in the high stakes constellations market."

"The associated CAPEX, including replenishment costs, is one the biggest hurdles to HTS, EO, and IoT constellation business plans"

"Vertical integration trends – such as in-house manufacturing and, in the case of SpaceX, incorporating that with its own launch services - aimed at lowering costs further actually add another layer of complexity that is greatly underestimated. Supply chain management is a momentous challenge, ..."

"There is a compelling level of optimism towards Non-GEO constellations, ... However, financial success for LEO constellations depends on their ability to bring pricing down to a level competitive with terrestrial networks and make the services affordable to target markets"
satellite  constellations  LEO  HTS  research  NSR  reports  consulting  market-analysis  market-research  business 
may 2018 by pierredv
Gwynne Shotwell: SpaceX's plan to fly you across the globe in 30 minutes | TED Talk
"It'll cost the company about 10 billion dollars or more to deploy this system"
SpaceX  Starlink  LEO  satellite  broadband 
april 2018 by pierredv
LEO constellation rush not a threat to Iridium, CEO says - SpaceNews.com Apr 2018
"Large constellations of satellites planned for low Earth orbit (LEO) present little threat to Iridium’s business despite sharing the same orbit, CEO Matt Desch said April 26."

"Both Iridium’s legacy satellite constellation and its upgraded Iridium Next fleet that is mid-deployment operate using L-band frequencies. L-band is smaller swath of spectrum that can’t offer the same high throughputs as higher frequency spectrum like Ku- and Ka-band, but is known for its robust signal strength, often making it the frequency of choice for safety communications. Most large LEO constellations that have gained significant attention, including SpaceX, OneWeb, Telesat, LeoSat and Kepler Communications, are designing satellites in Ku and/or Ka-band."

"Iridium reported a 14-percent increase in revenue growth for the first three months of 2018 as compared to the same period last year. Money generated from Iridium subscribers, which numbered 996,000 as of March 31 and make up 75 percent of the company’s total revenue base, grew 10 percent."

"Desch said the majority of network traffic going through Iridium is now on the company’s Next satellites, of which 50 out of 66 are currently in orbit. "

"Iridium has since 2014 sought approval from the United Nations’ International Maritime Organization (IMO) to break competitor Inmarsat’s sole hold on emergency maritime communications."
SpaceNews  Iridium  LEO  investing  finance  satellite  L-band  Inmarsat  maritime 
april 2018 by pierredv
Backed by Government, Telesat to Initiate First Customer LEO Trials This Year - Via Satellite - Apr 2018
"Telesat launched its LEO Phase 1 satellite in January ... Since then, the company has completed orbit raising and is in the midst of testing the satellite’s payload, including demonstrating satellite tracking and Doppler compensation, low latency network performance, and tracking antenna validation, Hudson said. If all continues as smoothly as it has, Telesat will kick off its first demonstrations with customers in the second half of 2018, according to Hudson."

"As for launch options, the matter is somewhat complicated, as Telesat’s constellation will occupy multiple orbital planes at different altitudes and different inclinations. However, Hudson did say Telesat will likely select a heavy launch vehicle for its primary deployments."
ViaSatellite  Telesat  deployment  satellite  LEO  launch 
april 2018 by pierredv
Sky and Space Global Exec on the LEO First-Mover Advantage - Via Satellite -
"Now nearing the final stretch of technical qualifications, Sky and Space Global is on track to begin deploying its full Pearls constellation in the beginning of next year. The company has already secured a slew of early customers, and has also begun generating revenue with its first on-orbit satellites, the Three Diamonds. In an interview with Via Satellite, Chief Technical Officer (CTO) Meidad Pariente laid out the company’s initial strategy to enter the satellite market, and the journey it took to become one of the first movers in the emerging era of Low Earth Orbit (LEO) telecommunications services."

"... the full Pearl constellation, Pariente said, which Virgin Orbit will begin launching in batches of several dozens in Q1 2019"
ViaSatellite  SkyAndSpaceGlobal  LEO  deployment 
april 2018 by pierredv
Megaconstellations: Recipe for Disaster or Biggest Opportunity Yet? | Via Satellite, April 2018
"within this enthusiasm for large, powerful LEO constellations and the applications they’ll deliver, the voices of caution are growing louder, tempering much of the fervor around pushing fleets of fresh satellites into the skies. Some of the biggest concerns orbit around the topic of space debris"

"Since 2014, space industry consulting firm Northern Sky Research (NSR) has tracked $2.1 billion in investments for broadband megaconstellations (such as LeoSat and OneWeb), plus an additional $1.5 billion in SpaceX. Additionally, since 2016, NSR has tracked $23.7 million invested in satellite Internet of Things (IOT) startups. "

"Over the last several years, the company has spent more than $3 billion on a massive undertaking — refreshing the company’s existing fleet of satellites with a new constellation known as Iridium Next, an architecture consisting of 66 small, interconnected mobile satellites (plus nine on-orbit spares and six ground spares), which will reportedly cover 100 percent of the Earth’s surface, including oceans and polar regions. "

"One of the younger companies in this space, LeoSat Enterprises, is positioning itself as filling the space between traditional satellite and fiber-optic networks."

"But while LEO possesses latency advantages, Steve Collar [SES O3b mPower] says the cost of deployment is too prohibitive. SES plans to launch seven next-generation MEO satellites in 2021"

"The University of Southampton's debris simulation model, Debris Analysis and Monitoring Architecture to the GEO Environment (DAMAGE), offers scientists a glimpse of the worst-case scenario — whereupon a hypothetical large constellation operator disregards existing space debris mitigation guidelines, leading to series of collisions."

"While international guidelines currently recommend that operators remove spacecraft from LEO within 25 years of the end of the life of the spacecraft, Holger Krag [ESA's Space Debris Office] reportedly told attendees at 2017’s European Conference on Space Debris that only 60 percent of operators actually do that."

"a growing number of startups whose business case is based on their power to mitigate debris [e.g. Singapore-based Astroscale] raised $25 million [in 2017, for a] total raise to $53 million"
orbital-debris  ViaSatellite  LEO  satellite  space  LeoSat  Iridium  IoT  SES  NSR  investing 
march 2018 by pierredv
LEO and MEO broadband constellations mega source of consternation - SpaceNews.com Mar 2018
"the rush to HTS is driving down bandwidth prices so fast that some fairly low-mileage satellites are struggling to keep up."

“At the moment there is a potential scramble for who is going to be the third player between Telesat, LeoSat and SpaceX,” said Farrar. “It’s probably going to be clear in the next 12 months which of those is out ahead.”

"Perhaps the biggest variable in calculating demand is figuring out what consumers will have to pay for the user terminal—the receiver and antennas customers will use to connect to the constellation."

"Farrar is among analysts who doubt consumer broadband will be the biggest application for LEO constellations. Bridging the digital divide is a laudable goal, but backhaul — using satellites to help cellular networks to increase coverage and improve service — is an early market they can dominate with or without cheap antennas."
SpaceNews  NGSO  LEO  MEO  GEO  HTS  broadband  satellite  Tim-Farrar  Armand-Musey  NSR  antennas  Kymeta  Phasor  commerce  trends 
march 2018 by pierredv
Eutelsat Exec Discusses Possibility of Full LEO Constellation - Via Satellite - Mar 2018
"Eutelsat’s LEO for Objects (ELO) spacecraft will be used to assess the potential of LEO satellites in providing narrowband connectivity for objects. Jean-Hubert Lenotte, Eutelsat’s chief strategy officer, spoke to Via Satellite about the plans for the satellite, scheduled to launch in 2019, and how this could lead to Eutelsat looking to have a full constellation in LEO at some point in the future."

"We are targeting one specific application which is the Internet of Things (IOT) and we have chosen to use a LEO satellite because we think LEO will be well suited for such applications. Indeed IOT requires low bit rate connectivity and does not require a high concentration of capacity, meaning small satellites can be used. Therefore, we think there might be a business case for LEO in IOT."

"The satellite will be launched in the first half of 2019."

"For video, we only really see GEO satellites serving this market. For broadband, we don’t see today the potential opportunity for LEO satellites."
ViaSatellite  Eutelsat  LEO  IoT  broadband  interviews 
march 2018 by pierredv
March 2018 - LEO/MEO Satellites Poised to Make a Mark in Military Sector | Via Satellite
"Satellites in LEO and MEO soon will be here to stay thanks to companies like LeoSat, OneWeb, and SES-owned O3b. The question is whether they also can go beyond meeting the needs of commercial and consumer users to also serving the needs of a dispersed, increasingly mobile military. Via Satellite talks to leading LEO and MEO industry figures to see how they envision their constellations supporting military missions globally in a fast-evolving threat environment."

"The United States Defense Information Systems Agency’s (DISA) recent Request for Information (RFI) calling for a low-latency satellite connectivity solution underscores the government’s openness for considering new non-Geosynchronous Earth Orbit (GEO) solutions. And that cooperative posture also has been illustrated during the Air Force’s wideband Analysis of Alternatives (AoA) exercise to define the future space architecture, where several LEO and MEO companies put forth their recommendations."

"LeoSat is on schedule to launch two demonstration satellites in the second half of 2019. Launch of the production satellites will begin in late 2020 and the constellation should be complete by 2022." LeoSat's Abad: “We are not looking to bring broadband down to every single person in the world. We want to provide carrier-grade telecommunications services via space.”

"Both LeoSat and OneWeb have received high-profile funding — SKY Perfect JSAT became an anchor investor in LeoSat in May, while OneWeb received $1 billion from Japan’s SoftBank last December, making it a 20 percent equity owner. OneWeb also has partnered with Airbus on its new high-volume production facility in Exploration Park, Florida."

“What needs to change is the ground infrastructure — you can’t build a LEO constellation realistically with two parabolic antennas and expect to reach the scale and volume that these providers talk about,” says Brad Grady, senior analyst in Northern Sky Research’s (NSR)

"NSR estimates that the defense sector will require about 14 gigabits per second of non-GEO HTS capacity demand by 2025, representing an 18 percent annual growth rate from 2015."

“Everyone has figured out that the critical point in launching these new constellations is the antenna system. You can’t have a successful non-GEO network without a very agile, very capable antenna technology,” says David Helfgott, CEO of Phasor, one of a handful of antenna technology providers who will plan to offer Commercial-Off-the-Shelf (COTS) antenna solutions for these up-and-coming constellations in the next 12 to 36 months.
ViaSatellite  LEO  MEO  ElectronicallySteerableAntenna  Phasor  satellite  defense  DoD  SES  NSR  LeoSat  OneWeb  venturecapital  VC  investing  antennas 
march 2018 by pierredv
[pdf] Satellite vulnerability to space debris risk - Denis Bensoussan, World Space Risk Forum 2012
Average current risk of collision at GEO is 1 every 135 years

LEO: Probability that any given satellite at 800-900km will be hit by debris larger than 1 cm approaching 3% over 5 to 10 year lifetime (est. NASA) (Failure risk due to debris impact remains a substantially lower
probability than risks of launcher or satellite mechanical failure)
satellite  space  space-debris  risk-assessment  GEO  LEO  insurance 
january 2018 by pierredv
Spengler Maps out 2018 for Intelsat After Eventful 2017 | Via Satellite Jan 2018
VIA SATELLITE: Will Telesat go ‘big’ into LEO?

Goldberg: I think this is where the future lies. If our assumptions are right about what we can achieve technically, the price points that we are seeking to achieve, and the response from the customer community, we will go very big into this. I can see this very much being the future of the company. It will play out over the course of this year.

VIA SATELLITE: SES made their big mPOWER announcement. Will Telesat’s ambitions have a similar scale?

Goldberg: For sure. It will be terabits of capacity. We have a very flexible, high throughput, low latency architecture. It is a broadband play. We will target many of the same verticals we are serving today on the enterprise side, including mobility, government and cellular and IP backhaul requirements. Initially we will focus less on direct-to-consumer services, as I believe there has to be further development of the user antenna to make that more cost competitive.
ViaSatellite  Telesat  satellite  LEO  NGSO  interviews 
january 2018 by pierredv
Telesat Celebrates Launch of Its First LEO Satellite - Via Satellite - Jan 2018
"Telesat announced the successful launch of its first Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite, an important milestone in the company’s plans to deploy a global LEO constellation to provide broadband communications services around the world.Telesat’s Phase 1 LEO satellite flew into orbit aboard a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) operated by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO). Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd. (SSTL) built the spacecraft at its facilities in the United Kingdom."

"initial constellation will consist of approximately 120 satellites launched by 2021"

"Telesat has installed ground infrastructure at its teleport in Allan Park in Ontario, Canada, to support testing and has customers in growing enterprise segments who will be participating in trials during 2018."
Telesat  SurreySatelliteTechnology  ISRO  India  space  newspace  satellite  LEO  NGSO  deployment 
january 2018 by pierredv
Q&A | Telesat’s Erwin Hudson opens up about LEO mega-constellation plans - SpaceNews.com Oct 2017
"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."

Erwin Hudson: "a range of tests on the Phase 1 satellites during 2018 ... We plan to launch Phase 2 satellites beginning in 2020, and commence commercial service in 2021"
SpaceNews  Telesat  satellite  LEO  deployment  NGSO 
january 2018 by pierredv
Satellite Internet in Rural Sub-Saharan Africa: a Reality Check | LinkedIn, Eric Anderson, Sep 2017
"Here are my partly-informed observations based on several short visits to one small area of rural sub-Saharan Africa since 2010. In summary:
1. Satellite coverage is beginning to appear, but it’s spotty, expensive and limited,
2. Mobile terrestrial network use is widespread and growing and
3. There are other more immediate challenges unrelated to internet access."

"One intriguing offering is hybrid terrestrial-satellite connectivity with intelligent switchover and appropriate utilization of download and upload capacities as promoted by companies like Forsway, and in the thinking of larger entities like Facebook and OneWeb."
satellite  Africa  GEO  MEO  LEO  OneWeb  Kenya 
november 2017 by pierredv
OneWeb signs $190M contract with Hughes for ground network to support LEOs | FierceWireless
"Hughes Network Systems signed a contract for $190 million with OneWeb for the production of a ground network system that will support OneWeb’s constellation of low Earth orbit (LEO) satellites. The contract builds on an original system development agreement the companies signed in June 2015, bringing the total value of both agreements to more than $300 million. The contract includes production of gateway sites, each with multiple tracking satellite access points to support handoff of high-speed user traffic between satellites."

"OneWeb has a lot of eyes watching it after raising nearly $2 billion in equity from shareholders including Qualcomm, Hughes, Intelsat, Coca-Cola, Airbus Group, the Virgin Group and SoftBank Group. The Virgin Group’s Sir Richard Branson and Qualcomm Executive Chairman Paul E. Jacobs, Ph.D., are on OneWeb’s board."
FierceWireless  Hughes  OneWeb  satellite  LEO 
november 2017 by pierredv
SpaceX Testifies: First Prototype Satellite Coming This Year - Via Satellite - Nov 2017
"In an Oct. 25 testimony delivered to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, SpaceX Vice President of Satellite Government Affairs Patricia Cooper reaffirmed the company’s plans to launch the first prototype of its Low Earth Orbit (LEO) broadband constellation before the end of the year and an additional prototype in the early months of 2018.

Cooper also stated that SpaceX expects to begin offering commercial services with as few as 800 satellites on orbit. When fully deployed, the constellation — dubbed “Starlink,” as a recent trademark filing revealed — will comprise 4,425 Ku- and Ka-band satellites operating in 83 planes. In her testimony, Cooper referred to an additional constellation of 7,500 V-band satellites that will fly even closer to Earth than the Starlink system, in Very Low Earth Orbit (VLEO)."

"Cooper also highlighted SpaceX’s belief that systems with more efficient spectrum use should be “rewarded.” According to her testimony, operators investing in more advanced technologies should not be forced to carry an asymmetrical burden when it comes to spectrum sharing. “The Committee should ensure that their rules do not unduly burden more flexible, adaptable systems with the responsibility of spectrum sharing with other less sophisticated systems,” she said."
SatelliteToday  satellite  LEO  SpaceX  deployment 
november 2017 by pierredv
EXCLUSIVE - Tom Choi: Life after ABS - Via Satellite -Oct 2017
VIA SATELLITE: Given the influx of new players in the satellite industry and the new Low and Medium Earth Orbit (LEO/MEO) players that you have been outspoken against, what does the future hold for a player like ABS?

Choi: As I said many times before … I doubt the majority will ever launch and even if they do most will fail. Why? Let me ask a few questions: Where do they have market access, ground facilities to install their gateways, and most importantly who are their customers? They say they will fill the niche of serving the unconnected but they won’t be competitive to 5G. These are basic questions investors ask. This is why most will not get financing because they cannot answer them. As an example, which Export Credit Agency (ECA) is backing these crazy projects with no customers? Not a single one thus far. Look at what happened when the last company got funded on “hot air:” NewSat collapsed much to the chagrin of EXIM bank. I seriously doubt they want to relive that kind of experience again, this time on a much larger scale. So, the answer to your question is no, ABS will not be materially impacted.
ViaSatellite  LEO  satellite  business  NGSO  critique  interviews 
november 2017 by pierredv
November/December 2017 - RSCC Exec Doubts Success of New Constellations | Via Satellite Oct 2017
[RSCC Director General Yuri] Prokhorov is concerned that the industry is dashing headlong into an unknown market where the Return on Investment (ROI) could be far from guaranteed. “When I talk personally to these executives who are developing these new systems and I ask questions related to frequency coordination, and ask about the customer equipment and business plans, I do not receive clear answers to some simple questions. But these are critical questions. So now I start to doubt the profitability and viability of these systems. Are they commercially viable or not? For us it seems like the LEO system cannot provide an ROI in the short term,” he comments.

...

Given these comments and talk of “unhealthy hype” around these new constellations, I ask Prokhorov directly whether he thinks a company like OneWeb will succeed. “We still don’t know where the market is, and that is the main issue,” he says. “I might say there are many executives of satellite operators which have a lot of capacity in GEO, and they can provide services right now, and much cheaper than LEO or MEO constellations. OneWeb may be relevant in two years, but it isn’t now?”
SatelliteToday  GEO  LEO  commerce 
october 2017 by pierredv
Smallsat constellations – Satellite Observation, Feb 2017
Review of Smallsat

"The launcher side of the industry is evolving too: Europe has recently introduced the Vega rocket to launch small payloads to LEO, OneWeb plans to use the Launcher One rocket from Virgin Galactic to replace failing satellites, Planet is scheduled to launch its next satellites on the Electron rocket from Rocket Labs, and SpaceX sees the reusability of its Falcon 9 rocket as a way to launch its potential constellation cheaply and quickly. The Chinese are also introducing small launchers, to be able to orbit payloads on short notice."
smallsat  LEO  surveillance  PlanetLabs  SkyBox  BlackSky  launch 
september 2017 by pierredv
Iridium explores LPGAN tech for space-based IoT | FierceWireless, Sep 2017
"Iridium Communications has signed a deal with Magnitude Space, an emerging small satellite company, signaling Iridium's interest in exploring collaborative partnerships with players in the small satellite low-power arena. . . the companies will begin discussions on how to collaboratively expand opportunities for space-based IoT services with the development of reliable, Low-Power Global-Area Network (LPGAN) technologies."

"Magnitude Space, headquartered in Amsterdam, is planning to build a network of 18-24 small satellites that will deliver LPGAN connectivity to remote areas of the world. "
FierceWireless  Iridium  IoT  satellite  NewSapce  LEO 
september 2017 by pierredv
September/October 2017 - Bandwidth Management: New Paths in the LEO and MEO Era | Via Satellite
"The advent of new High Throughput Satellites (HTS) will add to the swell of LEO and MEO bandwidth supply. As capacity will likely reach unprecedented levels, can the industry expect a surplus? And would this render bandwidth management less vital? Market players break down the demands and trends, revealing that bandwidth management solutions will see greater importance."

"Looking singularly on satellite networks, there are a few things bandwidth management can do: Adaptive Coding and Modulation (ACM), TCP/IP proxy, compression, caching and the like. However, SpeedCast prefers to think beyond that, explains Berge, adding that customers are benefiting from having hybrid networks and, therefore, the company has a focus on Software Defined Networks (SDN)."
SatelliteToday  LEO  MEO  satellite  HTS  SDN 
august 2017 by pierredv
Satellite Drag | NOAA / NWS Space Weather Prediction Center
"Drag has a significant impact on spacecraft in low Earth orbit (LEO), generally defined as an orbit below an altitude of approximately 2,000 kilometers (1,200 mi). Although the air density is much lower than near the Earth’s surface, the air resistance in those layers of the atmosphere where satellites in LEO travel is still strong enough to produce drag and pull them closer to the Earth"

"The drag force on satellites increases during times when the Sun is active. When the Sun adds extra energy the atmosphere the low density layers of air at LEO altitudes rise and are replaced by higher density layers that were previously at lower altitudes. "

"When the Sun is quiet, satellites in LEO have to boost their orbits about four times per year to make up for atmospheric drag. When solar activity is at its greatest over the 11-year solar cycle, satellites may have to be maneuvered every 2-3 weeks to maintain their orbit"

"interactions between the solar wind and the Earth’s magnetic field during geomagnetic storms can produce large short-term increases in upper atmosphere temperature and density, increasing drag on satellites and changing their orbits. The North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) has to re-identify hundreds of objects and record their new orbits after a large solar storm event (Figure 2)"

"It is extremely important to keep track of spacecraft and objects flying in the space to avoid collisions with space junk and orbital debris that may be in their path. Collision avoidance has become of increasing concern due to the recent accidental hypervelocity collision of two intact spacecraft in February, 2009. "
NOAA  satellite  LEO  space  collisions  space-debris  SSN 
may 2017 by pierredv
Space upstart plans public cloud in low Earth orbit • The Register, May 2017
The company plotting to put VMs in space is called Vector Space Systems. It says it will fly a range of rockets. The baby of the company’s fleet, the “Vector-R,” is a deliberately small vehicle that can lift payloads of up to 60kg to low-Earth orbit. And it’s simple enough that Vector thinks it can be launching 100 times a year.
TheRegister  NGSO  LEO  cloud 
may 2017 by pierredv
Overview of LEO Satellite Systems [pdf]
Christopher Redding
Institute for Telecommunication Sciences
ITS  LEO  satellite 
may 2017 by pierredv
Low Earth orbit satellite broadband makes a comeback - Insight - News | Analysys Mason
"the hot topic of conversation at the Satellite 2015 conference and trade show in Washington, DC was a series of rival proposals from OneWeb, SpaceX and LeoSat for new LEO constellations designed to provide global broadband connectivity" - Why? 1) Iridium & Globalstar constellations deployed, running; 2) broadband market now much more developed than 1990s; 3) new entrants have shown that LEO satellites can be built at low cost; 4) advances in terminal antennas
AnalysysMason  LEO  satellite 
april 2015 by pierredv
Rumor Mill: Google-backed venture will launch satellites in 5 years to deliver global Internet access - FierceWirelessTech
"In April, it was widely reported that Google was eyeing Skybox Imaging, a California-based startup that builds imaging microsatellites. Nothing appears to have transpired on that front, but WorldVu Satellites--a new company Google is reportedly backing--has secured spectrum rights for a low-earth-orbit satellite constellation."
Google  LEO  WorldVu  Skybridge  satellites  FierceWireless 
june 2014 by pierredv
Google’s space odyssey… TMF Associates MSS blog » May 2014
"Notably the satellites would use the Ku-band, not the Ka-band which has been popular for broadband in recent years. This takes advantage of the FCC and international rulings secured by Skybridge in the late 1990..."
Google  satellite  Tim  Farrar  TMF  Associates  Skybridge  WorldVu  LEO  blogs 
may 2014 by pierredv
Zen Productivity : zenhabits
1. trust in the moment 2. meditate for a few minutes 3. make a short list 4. single-task 5. set intentions: “Is this the most important task I can be doing right now?” “What is my intention with this task?” 6. realize you're already there 7. keep a stateless mindset 8. Let go of finishing your list or inbox
Leo  Babauta  work  effectivenss  productivity  * 
february 2014 by pierredv

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