Bankrupt OneWeb gets FCC approval for another 1,280 broadband satellites

Illustration of a OneWeb satellite orbiting the Earth.

Enlarge / Illustration of a OneWeb satellite. (credit: OneWeb)

Amid a bankruptcy and a pending sale, OneWeb has secured US approval to offer broadband service from 2,000 satellites.

OneWeb already had Federal Communications Commission approval for a 720-satellite constellation that was green-lit in June 2017. In an order released yesterday, the FCC gave OneWeb approval for another 1,280 satellites.

The first 720 satellites, of which OneWeb has launched 74, are for low Earth orbital altitudes of 1,200km. The additional 1,280 satellites were approved for medium Earth orbits of 8,500km. Both are much lower than the 35,000km geostationary orbits used by traditional satellite-broadband networks, which should result in lower latency and a better experience for Internet users.

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