Tuesday, 15 October, 2019


Amazon asks FCC to greenlight its internet satellite plan

Amazon reveals plan to build global internet with network of 3,236 broadband satellites Amazon asks FCC to greenlight its internet satellite plan
Melba Vasquez | 11 July, 2019, 19:51

Amazon submitted its application with the FCC for Project Kuiper on July 4.

FCC approval is needed for Amazon's plans because it is the government body that coordinates trajectories and radio-frequency use, explains Bloomberg.

Low earth orbit classification covers satellites which orbit at altitudes from 112 to 1,200 miles and they need to be powered to stay aloft. The filing seeks permission from the US communications regulator to launch a total of 3,236 communications satellites to provide the backbone of its network. To avoid potential issues with space debris, the satellites would de-orbit in about 10 years. The plan was dubbed Project Kuiper and Kuiper Systems, a wholly-owned Amazon subsidiary, has been set up to implement it.

"We now have in our sights new competition in the broadband marketplace and new opportunities for rural Americans who lack access to high-speed Internet access", Pai said in remarks prepared for a talk at the US Chamber of Commerce.

"Amazon's mission is to be Earth's most customer-centric company, and the Kuiper System is one of our ambitious projects to fulfil this mission", the filing states. Starlink satellites are already in orbit, including 57 once you take out the three that SpaceX lost contact with post-launch.

Amazon is pressing ahead with its plans to bring global blanket broadband internet coverage delivered from space.

Kuiper's president, Rajeev Badyal, was previously fired from SpaceX after CEO Elon Musk was unhappy with his progress in creating a satellite-broadband program.

Others are attempting to serve the same need in the same way, including SpaceX, which is looking to launch a network of almost 12,000 broadband satellites for its "Starlink" network.

In its filing, Amazon asserts the company has the "expertise, infrastructure and financial resources" to make the project a success.

However, this is not the first time that satellite broadband, supported by billionaires, has been tried.

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