EXPLORATION PARK, Florida, USA, 03 February 2020 – 34 satellites for the OneWeb constellation are ready for launch from Baikonur, Kazakhstan. The satellites which arrived in two shipments, including one last week, have been tested, and have now been fitted into the dispenser of the Soyuz-2.1b rocket. OneWeb’s upcoming launch of 34 satellites has been scheduled for Thursday 6 February 21:42 (GMT) / Friday 7 February 02:42 (local time) from the historic Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan.
“This launch will be a massive step forward for OneWeb – one step closer to the ambition of improving global connectivity. These 34 satellites will join the six currently operating flawlessly in orbit. Our joint venture OneWeb Satellites produces two satellites a day – in series production, just like Airbus makes planes,” said Jean-Marc Nasr, Head of Airbus Space Systems.
The satellites, which are manufactured at 1/50th of the cost of a traditional spacecraft, are all fitted with plasma thrusters enabling them to reach their correct position in low Earth orbit at 1,200km.
“Watching the first batch of our factory-built satellites launch from the Soyuz will be the realisation of a four-year journey… and just the beginning,” said Tony Gingiss, CEO OneWeb Satellites. “Our factory continues to ramp up and streamline our production to deliver the next batch… and the next… and the next!”
The OneWeb constellation will provide global connectivity with an initial 650 satellites. OneWeb’s mission is to provide affordable, high-speed internet connectivity everywhere for everyone, by 2021.
After this first launch from Baikonur, OneWeb is planning to launch around 30 satellites with Soyuz rockets every month.
About OneWeb Satellites
OneWeb Satellites is a joint venture between Airbus and OneWeb that was formed in 2016 to design and manufacture the satellites for the OneWeb constellation. In the process, OneWeb Satellites has revolutionised satellite manufacturing by being the first to utilise commoditisation and mass production techniques to dramatically reduce production times and costs. Where a traditional satellite may cost tens of millions of dollars and take years to build, we can do it at a far lower cost and at a production rate of up to two per day.
The mission is not limited to the OneWeb program. Through our partnership with Airbus, we are offering to the market a standardized, mass produced satellite platform and payload interface that can be compatible with many different payloads, providing end-users with dramatic cost savings and opening the door for missions that were previously unthinkable.
OneWeb’s vision is to enable Internet access for everyone, everywhere. It is implementing a constellation of Low Earth-Orbiting satellites with a network of global gateway stations and a range of user terminals to provide an affordable, fast, high bandwidth and low latency communications service for businesses and governments around the world. OneWeb has business solutions for Broadband, Government and Cellular Backhaul. Its global communications network will offer game-changing Mobility solutions to industries that rely on global connectivity, such as Aviation, Maritime, Automotive and more. OneWeb is dedicated to Responsible Space practices on the basis that Space is a shared natural resource, which if used responsibly, can help transform the way we live, work, and connect. Softbank and Airbus, Coca-Cola, Virgin, Bharti, the government of Rwanda, and Grupo Salinas are investment partners.
Find out more at http://www.oneweb.world, and Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Instagram
Airbus is a global leader in aeronautics, space and related services. In 2018 it generated revenues of € 64 billion and employed a workforce of around 134,000. Airbus offers the most comprehensive range of passenger airliners. Airbus is also a European leader providing tanker, combat, transport and mission aircraft, as well as one of the world’s leading space companies. In helicopters, Airbus provides the most efficient civil and military rotorcraft solutions worldwide