OneWeb confirms successful launch and contact with all 36 satellites, bringing total in-orbit constellation to 182 satellites
OneWeb are launching a further 36 satellites and are on schedule to complete their 648 LEO constellation. Low Earth Orbit satellites can provide global internet access, where remote regions of earth have until recently relied on expensive metered access.
OneWeb are looking to provide the infrastructure for entire communities rather than just individuals. Bringing entire countries online for the first time and reducing dependence on deep sea cabling for Internet access.
OneWeb today are launching another 36 satellites with this being the third step in a five launch program and taking the number of satellites OneWeb having in low orbit to 182. The completion of this program will establish Internet based services throughout Europe, Northern America and the Arctic via a constellation of low Earth orbit satellites.
Connecting Europe, Arctic, Northern Americas
On schedule to cover 50 degrees latitude and above by June, with service ready to start by the end of the year
The satellites will be around 745 miles (1200km) from earth and aim to provide low latency networking, Kazakhstan with it’s million square mile land mass (twelve times the size of the UK or just under four times the size of Texas) will be having a test run in June. In recent tests OneWeb have seen 500mbs with 34ms latency.
Satellite based communications are on course by the mid 2020’s to be a complement to cable based internet access. New regions will come online and the Arctic circle having full connectivity. Where solar powered stations will be able to transmit data in real time around the world.
OneWeb contacted by US Space Agency
There was almost a collision between a OneWeb and Starlink satellite, with the US Space Agency having to establish emergency communications between the two companies. The two satellites came within 190 feet (57m) of each other with it and Starlink cagey over it’s anti-collision technology and reluctant to initiate manual control.
OneWeb’s satellites today will be taken to 450km at which point they will be released and will rise to around 1,200km from where the 150kg satellite will begin transmitting back to Earth using it’s Ku-Band antenna. Aiming to connect remote regions, boats and rural communities by the end of 2021.