Amazon’s Project Kuiper will deploy 3,236 satellites that will orbit the earth at various altitudes, and provide broadband service around the globe. (Image credit: Pixabay)
Back in September of last year, reports started surfacing about Amazon posting job offers (software engineer and Project manager) for what they termed a “New AWS (Amazon Web Service) service that will have a historic impact.” It slowly became known, that Amazon needed qualified people to develop cloud services for satellites and space-based systems. With recent International Telecommunications Union and FCC filings, it looks as though the company is indeed looking to deploy global broadband service to the world.
Not much is known about Amazon’s “Project Kuiper,” which became known through those recent filings, but they do propose a plan to launch 3,236 satellites into low-earth orbit, with 784 of them orbiting at an altitude of 367-miles, 1,296 at 379-miles, and 1,156 at 391-miles. Amazon confirmed their plans after GeekWire stumbled onto their filings, and in an interview with the news site, an Amazon spokesperson stated, “Project Kuiper is a new initiative to launch a constellation of low Earth orbit satellites that will provide low-latency, high-speed broadband connectivity to unserved and underserved communities around the world. This is a long-term project that envisions serving tens of millions of people who lack basic access to broadband internet. We look forward to partnering on this initiative with companies that share this common vision.”
Amazon also stated their birds would provide hot spots for 95% of the world’s population by flying those satellites at 56-degrees north to 56-degrees south. While most of the earth’s population has access to some type of internet connection, a surprising amount of others do not. The UN Broadband Commission estimates there are almost 4-billion people don’t have access to internet service, but Project Kuiper and other satellite initiatives from SpaceX, OneWeb, and Telesat could help bring down those numbers.
This will also serve as a good way to gather data from remote locations as well. Hope it all works out.
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