Astra, Hughes Net, Inmarsat, Telesat, and Others File Constellation Applications

Via Astra

Astra, Hughes, Inmarsat, and Telesat filed plans yesterday with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to build satellite constellations in low-Earth orbit (LEO). The FCC parcels out and regulates radio frequency (RF) usage in the US. 

Why all at once? A coincidence? But of course not. Yesterday was the deadline for the FCC’s new processing round for satellite V-band applications. Details: 

  1. Astra, which has a critical launch coming up, filed an application for up to 13,620 LEO satellites. 
  2. Hughes applied for 1,440 LEO satellites. 
  3. Inmarsat is requesting US V-band access with a future 198-satellite constellation. 
  4. Telesat has applied to build more satellites to extend its current network, theoretically bringing its constellation size to 1,671.

An open question: How many satellite constellations is too many satellite constellations?