Jeff Bezos’ Amazon and Elon Musk’s SpaceX are among companies doing due diligence on OneWeb, the satellite broadband company that declared bankruptcy in March.
Other companies interested include Eutelsat, Cerberus and two Chinese companies, according to Space Intel Report.
OneWeb has 74 satellites in orbit, which is only 11.4 percent of an initial planned constellation of 648 satellites designed to provide broadband services across the globe.
SpaceX is already deploying its rival Starlink constellation with satellites the company says are more capable than the ones launched by OneWeb. Bezos’ Amazon is planning its own satellite constellation.
It’s not clear whether potential buyers want to purchase the entire company or the OneWeb’s bandwidth allocation, which could be worth as much as $1 billion.
OneWeb filed bankruptcy in March, blaming the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic for drying up financing for the multi-billion satellite constellation.
PARIS (Arianespace PR) — The European Space Agency (ESA) has finalized its preorder for four more launches on Ariane 6, along with an initial payment.
Using Ariane 62, the light version of the new European launcher, these missions will be carried out on behalf of the European Commission to continue the deployment and operational ramp-up of the high-performance Galileo satellite navigation system.
PARIS (Exotrail PR) — Exotrail, a French company dedicated to providing innovative on-orbit transportation solutions for the small satellite market have announced today that they have signed a contract with AAC Clyde Space, Europe’s leading nanosatellite solutions specialist.
Exotrail will equip them with cutting-edge propulsion solutions for their customer, the global satellite telecommunications leader Eutelsat, for its ELO 3 and ELO 4 spacecrafts.The French company will provide propulsion systems for the two 6U CubeSats which will be manufactured and delivered to orbit by AAC Clyde Space.
PARIS, 17 January, 2020 (Eutelsat PR) – On October 24, 2019, Eutelsat announced an investigation into a malfunction on one of the two solar arrays on its EUTELSAT 5 West B satellite. Pursuant to this investigation, the loss of the satellite’s South solar array has been confirmed. With the exception of the South solar array, the satellite performance remains nominal.
The attendant power loss means c.45% of the capacity of the satellite can be operated.
KOUROU, French Guiana (ESA PR) — Ariane 5’s first launch of 2020 has delivered two telecom satellites, Konnect and GSAT-30, into their planned transfer orbits. Arianespace announced liftoff at 21:05 GMT (22:05 CET, 18:05 local time) this evening from Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana.
Konnect, with a launch mass of 3619 kg, was the first to be released after about 27 minutes.
KOUROU, French Guiana (ESA PR) — The first satellite developed under an initiative to help European industry deliver competitive satellites for the commercial telecommunications market has entered its final phase before launch.
Konnect will provide broadband services for Europe and Africa, and was built by Thales Alenia Space for Eutelsat, its commercial operator, under an ESA Partnership Project.
MOSCOW (Roscosmos PR) — On October 9, 2019, at 10:17:56 the Proton-M carrier rocket with Briz-M booster together with Eutelsat 5 West B and Mission Extension Vehicle-1 satellites successfully launched from launchpad No.39 pad No.200 at the Baikonur Cosmodrome. The start and the flight of the launch vehicle went as expected with no remarks.
Four upcoming launches in the United States, Russia and New Zealand feature payloads to refuel a communications satellite, study space weather, expand SpaceX’s Starlink network, and test out new technology.
This is the first flight of the MEV, which will refuel the Intelsat 901 communications satellite. Both satellites on this launch were built by Northrop Grumman.
Pegasus XL Payload: Ionospheric Connection Explorer (ICON) satellite Launch Platform:Stargazer L-1011 aircraft Departure Site: Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla. Launch Window: 9:25-10:55 p.m. EDT on Oct. 9 (0125-0255 GMT on Oct. 10)
NASA’s ICON mission will study disturbances in the ionosphere caused by terrestrial weather and solar storms that disrupt radio transmissions and GPS navigation. ICON has suffered repeated delays due to technical problems. The original launch date was in June 2017. The launch is being conducted by Northrop Grumman.
Electron Payloads: Palisade CubeSat Launch Site: Mahia Peninsula, New Zealand Launch Window: 7:00-11:00 p.m. EDT on Oct. 14 (2300-0300 GMT on Oct. 14/15)
Rocket Lab’s “As The Crow Flies” mission is the ninth launch of the Electron rocket Astro Digital’s Palisade technology demonstration satellite is a 16U CubeSat with a next-generation communications system and an an on-board propulsion system.
NET October 17
Falcon 9 Payloads: ~ 60 Starlink 1 communications satellites Launch Site: Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla. Launch Time: TBD
SpaceX will launch the second group of Starlink 1 broadband satellites no earlier than Oct. 17.
TOULOUSE, France (ESA PR) — The Quantum satellite – Europe’s reprogrammable telecommunications satellite – built through an ESA Partnership Project with its operator Eutelsat successfully completed thermal vacuum testing on 28 September.
The huge test chamber at Airbus’s Astrolabe facility in Toulouse took the “chameleon satellite” through its paces over the past five weeks.
TOULOUSE, France, 28 May 2019 (SSTL PR) — The payload and the platform for the EUTELSAT QUANTUM satellite were successfully joined together at the Airbus facility in Toulouse on 10th May.
The satellite has been developed as an ESA Partnership Project with satellite operator Eutelsat and satellite manufacturer Airbus, under ESA’s programme of Advanced Research in Telecommunications Systems (ARTES) leveraging on Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd, which provided the satellite’s innovative platform.
Close to £1 million [$1.28 million] of government funding will be used to inspire the next generation of engineers and support future commercial range control services for UK spaceflight.
SWINDON, UK (UKSA PR) — The UK Space Agency is awarding £325,000 [$415,357] to the UK Association for Science and Discovery Centres (ASDC) to bring the latest space science to children and families across the UK.
This will help create new resources based on real scientific and engineering challenges, including those facing the operation of UK spaceports, rockets and spaceplanes.
Together, up to 14 UK science centres and museums will deliver activities to 200,000 children and adults until March 2021, building on the success of ASDC’s Destination Space education programme, which reached more than 900,000 people during Tim Peake’s Principia mission.
PARIS (Arianespace PR) — Arianespace and Eutelsat Communications (NYSE Euronext Paris: ETL) have concluded a long-term multiple-launch service agreement on the occasion of the World Satellite Business Week in Paris.
The agreement covers five launches until 2027 and will provide Eutelsat with assured access to space with schedule flexibility at cost effective prices. With this agreement, Eutelsat is the first commercial customer to sign up to Ariane 6, Arianespace’s next-generation launch vehicle, expected to start service from 2020.