Things are about to get really interesting in space. On the heels of the news that SpaceX was awarded certification to bid for Pentagon satellite contracts, Elon Musk’s rocket company has asked the Federal Communications Commission for permission to launch two experimental internet-beaming satellites. If the FCC allows SpaceX to follow through with this launch, the rocket company has plans for three additional pairs of similar satellites to take off in the future.
Internet-beaming satellites are among the hottest innovations in tech, with some of the world’s smartest folks working toward a bright new future. Google’s Project Loon has been underway for the past few years, seeking to beam down internet access with 180 satellites. Facebook is also in on the action, but from within earth’s atmosphere, as they plan to launch their downlink drone this summer in an attempt to spread internet access farther around the globe.
According to reports from Time, the SpaceX satellites would most likely be launched from Vandenburg Air Force Base, which is situated on the California coast between Los Angeles and San Francisco. When the pair of identical satellites reach an orbital altitude of 625km (about 388 miles), they will beam down broadband internet to three receivers located in Redmond, Washington; Fremont and Hawthorne, California.
As the proposal is for an experimental launch to test the waters- or the skies, as it were – there is no word on when or if this technology will become available to the public.
Images via SpaceX