Amazon's latest initiative is Project Kuiper, a constellation of Internet-beaming satellites

Shawn Knight

TechSpot Staff
Staff member

Amazon is working on an initiative to launch a constellation of low-Earth orbit satellites into space that will provide high-speed broadband connectivity to unserved and underserved regions around the globe.

Rumblings of the undertaking, codenamed Project Kuiper, first surfaced last September. More concrete evidence of the project emerged in March through public filings with the International Telecommunications Union.

An Amazon spokesperson confirmed the initiative’s existence in an e-mailed statement to GeekWire, referencing it as a long-term project aiming to serve tens of millions of people that lack basic Internet connectivity.

Project Kuiper – not likely to be the final name once commercialized – will consist of 784 satellites at an altitude of 367 miles, 1,296 units positioned at 379 miles above Earth and 1,156 floating in 391-mile-high orbits. Collectively, they’ll provide coverage on Earth between 56 degrees north and 56 degrees south latitude, an area that covers roughly 95 percent of the population.

The idea of a constellation of thousands of small Internet-beaming satellites isn’t unique to Amazon. SpaceX has already launched prototypes of its Starlink network into orbit, as has OneWeb. Facebook is also working with LeoSat on a similar project.

Lead image courtesy NicoElNino via Shutterstock

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TS Evangelist
Yes, let's make it as easy as possible to outsource jobs to the third world, because people there sure can't afford to shop on Amazon. That's all these infrastructure investments are ever about, because if that wasn't the case they would bringing that Internet to the 30% of the US that doesn't have broadband!

Uncle Al

TS Evangelist
With all the complaints about space junk and the complexity of tracking it, plus the India government now playing with "killer satellites" one really has to question if this is the wisest of business moves right now? At least name it the "bumper car satellite initiative" .....