OneWeb one launch away from completing satellite programme
OneWeb is just one launch away from completing its first generation of 648 satellites.
Elon Musk’s SpaceX successfully launched 40 OneWeb satellites last night (pictured) from Cape Canaveral in Florida.
Neil Masterson, CEO of OneWeb, commented: “Today’s launch is an exciting milestone as we are now just one mission away from completing our Gen 1 constellation, which will activate global service in 2023.”
The company now has 612 satellites in space. The last 36 satellites will be launched in the next few days from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota, India. That will complete OneWeb’s scheduled first generation of low Earth orbit (LEO) satellites.
Masterson said: “Now more than ever, OneWeb is dedicated to continuing the momentum we have garnered from the past 17 successful launches, to innovate alongside our trusted partners and deliver connectivity solutions at scale. Each launch is a group effort, and today’s success would not have been possible without the dedication of the entire launch team and our partners here in Florida.”
OneWeb’s satellites separated successfully last night from the SpaceX rocket and were dispensed using three separation groups over a period of 40 minutes, with the last separation occurring 95 minutes after launch.
Signal acquisition on all 40 satellites have been confirmed.
OneWeb said that last night’s launch enables it to continue expanding its connectivity capabilities as it grows its fleet of satellites and seeks to initiate services for more partners around the world.
The London-based company said it “already has connectivity solutions active today in key geographies across the globe and is bringing new areas online by partnering with leading providers including Veon, Orange, Galaxy Broadband, Paratus, Telespazio, and more”.
OneWeb said that it “and its partners are relentlessly focused on the mission to bridge the digital divide and provide internet connectivity to a greater number of unconnected and underserved rural and remote communities and businesses”.