OneWeb readies 36 satellites for April 26 launch
April 20, 2021
By Chris Forrester
An Arianespace Soyuz rocket is being prepared to carry the next 36 satellites into orbit for the mega-constellation from OneWeb.
The launch is currently scheduled to take place from the Vostochny Cosmodrome in the Far East of Russia on April 26th. Once completed, the launch will mean that OneWeb will have 182 satellites in orbit out of a planned constellation of 700.
Flight ST31, the third commercial mission performed by Arianespace and its Starsem affiliate from the Vostochny Cosmodrome, will put 36 of OneWeb’s satellites into a near-polar orbit at an altitude of 450 kms. The mission will have a total duration of three hours and 51 minutes and will include nine separations of four satellites, that will then raise themselves to their operational orbit. This sixth launch to the benefit of OneWeb will bring up to speed Arianespace’s operations this year, and will raise from 146 to 182 the number of satellites deployed for the global telecommunications operator.
Once deployed, the OneWeb constellation will enable user terminals that are capable of offering 3G, LTE, 5G and Wi-Fi coverage, providing high-speed access globally – by air, sea and land.
OneWeb is building two satellites a day from its facility in florida.