Giant of retail trade in the world (Amazon) has asked the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for permission to launch more than 3000 satellites into low Earth orbit (LEO).
The new space devices will provide broadband to underserved and remote parts of the world.
The firm’s hopes s to provide broadband internet from space were revealed in April when GeekWire reported that it had submitted three sets of filings with the International Telecommunications Union (ITU).
According to the filing, the 3236 satellites will be placed in a satellite constellation of 98 different orbital planes with altitudes ranging from 589 to 629 km above the surface of the Earth.
The satellites will use Ka band frequencies, which allows for high bandwidth satellite communication. This band will be used in the James Webb Space Telescope and the Iridium Next telecommunications satellite series.
Satellite internet remains expensive, but allows for wide access, high data speeds, and provides reasonably low latency for satellites in LEO.
Amazon states that its satellite constellation could bridge the “digital divide” by providing connectivity to rural and other underserved parts of the world, helping “tens of millions of people who lack basic access to broadband Internet.”
“Amazon seeks to maximize the potential of spectrum and orbital resources available to advanced NGSO broadband constellations, providing high quality broadband service to customers while simultaneously enhancing spectrum efficiency and spectrum sharing with other authorised systems,” the Amazon filing says.
Systems has said that satellite broadband could be offered soon after the first launch phase, which will involve a batch of over 500 satellites. The satellites are likely to be launched by rockets developed Blue Origin, which is funded by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.
While satellite constellations have attracted concern due to their potential to contribute to space debris, Amazon has stated that the satellites would be set to deorbit themselves in less than 10 years.