A smallsat bubble? The promises and pitfalls of the smallsat hype

Small satellite constellations, with improved radio chips and smaller electronics, have been touted as a cost-effective solution to meet the rising demand for connectivity around the globe. Small satellites have emerged as a major force in the past few years, driving change – and disruption – within a satellite industry dominated by large, custom spacecraft and expensive launches. But veterans of the commercial space sector will do well to remember the
LeoSat

LeoSat secures $1B worth of commercial contracts

NOTE: This story originally appeared in the Low Down, our free weekly ebrief. Subscribe to receive our take on the latest news, enabling tech and emerging markets in the commercial space sector. Low Earth orbit broadband operator LeoSat Enterprises has secured over $1 billion in pre-launch commercial contracts. In a news release, the company said the contracts are for services spanning data and mobility sectors, with customers in finance, telecommunications,

Two satellite manufacturers vie for Telesat LEO contract

Satellite operator Telesat has contracted two satellite manufacturing teams to develop competing system designs for Telesat’s proposed LEO constellation. Telesat struck an agreement with Thales Alenia Space and Maxar’s SSL late July to develop one system design and signed a similar deal just a week later with Airbus Defence and Space to develop another system. Both teams will submit proposals for final designs and manufacturing of the LEO satellite constellation

LEO HTS operators will struggle with ‘feasible business models’

A new report out from Northern Sky Research (NSR) predicts a “mixed outcome” for large high-throughput satellite (HTS) constellations. As we have previously reported, there are five companies now planning to launch LEO satellite mega-constellations, with the hopes of providing high speed, low latency broadband around the globe. These providers have drawn a “compelling level of optimism,” NSR said, pointing to the large amounts of funding being poured into these

LEO satellite broadband will be disruptive, if successful

A new crop of non-geostationary satellites could see the emergence of a new broadband market in low Earth orbit. SpaceX, Boeing, OneWeb, LeoSat and Telesat are five would-be satellite broadband service providers that have received FCC authorization for deploying satellite broadband in the US. If successful, these providers are poised to disrupt the current satellite broadband market, and perhaps even terrestrial fixed services in some areas. Satellite broadband is by