OneWeb on Friday confirmed the successful deployment of 40 satellites launched by Elon Musk-run SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket, from the Kennedy Space Centre in the US. This launch is OneWeb's 15th to date and the second since resuming its campaign with a successful launch from India in October, putting the company on track to deliver global coverage in 2023.
""We are thankful for the support of other leaders in the space industry allowing us to quickly restart our launch campaign and we are delighted to work with SpaceX today for our first-ever launch from Florida, the home where our satellites are manufactured," said Neil Masterson, Chief Executive Officer of OneWeb.
OneWeb's satellites separated successfully from the rocket and were dispensed in three phases over a period of one hour and 35 minutes, with signal acquisition on all 40 satellites confirmed, it said in a statement.
OneWeb already has connectivity solutions active today in Alaska, Canada, the UK, Greenland and wider Arctic area, with more locations covered to provide internet connectivity to unserved and underserved rural and remote communities and businesses.
With 502 satellites in orbit, OneWeb has almost 80 per cent of its first-generation constellation completed with only three more launches now remaining to reach global coverage. With this launch, the company will now be able to dramatically expand service and initiate connectivity solutions soon to areas including the US, southern Europe and North Africa, northern India, the Middle East, Japan, southern Australia, South Africa and parts of South America.