Canada’s Telesat gets endorsement for LEO
March 2, 2018
By Chris Forrester
Ottawa-based satellite operator Telesat is planning a new constellation of Low Earth Orbiting satellites to boost its coverage – domestically as well as internationally – of broadband services delivered by satellite.
Canada’s government is budgeting C$100 million (€63.2m) over the next 5 years to support the satellite initiative in relation to LEO satellites and ‘next generation’ rural broadband.
Telesat already has a test satellite in orbit. Telesat says its LEO constellation will deliver high-performing, cost-effective, fibre-like broadband connectivity anywhere in the world – including throughout all of Canada – for business, government and individual users.
“The initial constellation will consist of approximately 120 satellites by 2021 and Telesat is evaluating options to expand its system beyond this initial configuration. Telesat successfully launched its first LEO satellite earlier this year and will soon be conducting trials with a number of its customers around the world to validate certain key features of its advanced constellation.”
“Telesat’s planned LEO satellite constellation can deliver the high-speed Internet access that is essential for Canadian citizens and businesses – no matter where they’re located – to fully participate in the 21st century global community and economy,” commented Dan Goldberg, Telesat’s President and CEO. “The Government’s support of LEO satellite technology in Budget 2018 is an important step to help solve the rural broadband challenge in Canada. In addition, we strongly concur with the Government’s recognition that Canada’s world-class space industry is uniquely situated to build and operate these game changing communications networks, which would create a significant number of high tech jobs and foster meaningful innovation and economic growth here in Canada. We look forward to working with the Government of Canada and Canadian industry to capture the full promise of Telesat’s LEO constellation for Canada.”