Amazon seeks approval from US regulators to deploy 4,500 additional satellites for internet expansion project
Amazon previously stated that as part of its Project Kuiper endeavour, it expected to invest at least $10 billion in developing 3,236 such satellites.
Amazon is seeking permission from US communications authorities to launch more than 4,500 more satellites as part of the company's drive to bring high-speed internet to underserved areas across the world. Amazon previously stated that as part of its Project Kuiper endeavour, it expected to invest at least $10 billion in developing 3,236 such satellites. It requested authorization from the Federal Communications Commission to install a total of 7,774 satellites for the project and to launch and operate two prototype satellites by the end of 2022.
Amazon said in its petition that the satellites "would support families, hospitals, corporations, government agencies, and other institutions all around the world, particularly in geographic areas where stable broadband remains a difficulty." It also stated that while global connection has increased, just 51% of the worldwide population and 44% of developing nations are online. The FCC approved Project Kuiper, a low-Earth orbit satellite constellation to compete with Elon Musk's SpaceX's Starlink network, in 2020.
Amazon has sparred with Musk, lately accusing the billionaire of flouting a slew of regulatory regulations. Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and Musk compete in the private space launch market. Blue Origin, Bezos' company, had challenged the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's decision to grant SpaceX a $2.9 billion lunar lander contract, but a court dismissed the appeal on Thursday. SpaceX has launched almost 1,700 satellites. The FCC authorized Boeing's proposal to establish and operate 147 satellites to provide high-speed broadband internet access earlier this week.
This week, Boeing stated that it "sees a multi-orbit future for satellite technology." As the demand for satellite communications develops, more variety across orbital regimes and frequencies will be necessary to meet the needs of individual customers."