Half a dozen satellites launched by GalaxySpace a few days ago could form the basis of a 5G internet-capable satellite system across China.
While the big world is the most Elon Musk China is also looking to roll out its own system(s) by building its own system(s).
Last week, half a dozen Beijing-based GalaxySpace satellites were delivered to Low Earth Orbit (LEO) by a Chinese launch vehicle. Tests carried out with the help of devices will help to create a constellation that will be created at a later time that will completely cover the territory of the superpower in the Far East.
The test network, called a “small spider web”, will be transformed into a complete system of 144 satellites by a startup founded in 2016, which can provide much faster 5G connectivity even in remote areas than previous solutions.
Regarding the successful launch, a company spokesperson told state media that production costs have fallen since the construction of the first experimental satellite, and the structures weighed less than 200 kilograms.
Although GalaxySpace is a private company, the national network, of course, will only be able to at all in China under state supervision and control. By the way, the government does not rely only on the competitive sector in this issue, since two state-owned aerospace companies have been working on possible solutions for many years. Experimental satellites have been launched since 2018 as part of the Hongyan and Hongyun projects. For the former, 324 satellites are planned to be launched and for the latter 157 satellites in the near future.
A little is enough…
The above numbers may seem very small in light of the fact that SpaceX has already launched more than 2,000 units to build the Starlink constellation. And Amazon’s planned rival fleet, according to the latest news, could consist of 7,774 units, compared to less than half the original number.
However, there are examples of smaller constellation networks. Boeing has been licensed for 147 units that will provide services to the United States, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, and British government-backed OneWeb relies on 648 satellites for its own project.
Regarding China’s plans, on the one hand, it should be noted that an increase in the balance will be a matter of a government decision only, while the amount announced now may be enough to cover the entire country, which may be the most important. objectivity on the topic.
However, the idea of satellite internet is not popular everywhere in the world. These large-scale installations pose an increasingly serious problem for astronomers by “interfering” with making the recordings necessary for space observation. The more artificial devices orbiting around us, the bigger the problem. (Currently, one in ten valuable images will be unusable due to satellite interference.)
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