Amazon plans 3,236 satellites
July 8, 2019
By Chris Forrester
Amazon has confirmed that it wants to launch 3236 satellites into space. Its ‘Project Kuiper’ has already received plenty of speculation, but now the Jeff Bezos-backed business has formally asked the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to approve the scheme, and to permit frequencies to be used.
Amazon used a July 4th filing to the FCC to specify that it wanted to fly the mega-constellation at heights of between 590-630 kms and said that the system would offer fixed broadband communications to rural and hard-to-reach areas.
Kuiper would also offer “high-throughput mobile broadband connectivity services for aircraft, maritime vessels, and land vehicles”, states the filing.
According to the application, which is unlikely to be rejected, there are still 21 million Americans who lack fixed, residential broadband and 33 million who do not have access to a speedy cellular service.
Amazon has also sought similar recognition for Project Kuiper from the ITU.
As yet, there is no commitment as to who might build the satellites, although it is assumed by most that Bezos will use his ‘Blue Origin’ fleet of rockets to launch the constellation into orbit.