May, 2021 - By SMI
United Launch Alliance (ULA) to provide 9 launch vehicles for the initial launching of satellites.
Amazon announced on April 21, 2021 that its Project Kuiper bagged 9 Atlas V rockets from ULA to support the primary launching of satellites into the orbit. United Launch Alliance (ULA) is a joint venture for rockets between Lockheed Martin Corp and Boeing Co. The initiative aims to offer high speed satellite internet to the world at affordable rates.
These are one of the many vehicles that would be required to launch all the 3236 satellites that received approval from the US Federal Communication Commission, last year. Amazon believes Atlas V to be a largely reliable medium to launch the satellites which gives the perfect level of performance, dependability and capacity that is required to begin deployment on such a large scale. “ULA is a fantastic partner that’s successfully launched dozens of missions for commercial and government customers, and we’re grateful for their support of Kuiper", said Amazon's founder and CEO Jeff Bezos.
Last year, Amazon stated that it will invest above US$ 10 billion to create a constellation of satellites that provides low cost internet service, giving speeds up to 400 Mbps. There are reportedly over 500 people working on the Project Kuiper. Tory Bruno, ULA president and CEO said that Project Kuiper would be helpful in reducing the digital divide across the US and worldwide they cannot be any gladder to be supporting and working alongside Amazon in this initiative.
Kuiper's Atlas V rockets will be launched from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida. Dates have not been announced as of now. Amazon is hoping to speed up against the ongoing competition among established names in the satellite internet space such as Viasat, HughesNet, and SpaceX's Starlink.
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