Astranis reserves a satellite ride with SpaceX

Astranis satellite
An artist’s conception shows an Astranis satellite in geostationary orbit. (Astranis Illustration)

A California-based startup called Astranis Space Technologies has signed a deal with SpaceX for the launch of its first geostationary satellite, which is due to widen Alaska’s access to broadband internet service in 2021.

The deal calls for SpaceX to launch Astranis’ microsatellite as a secondary payload on a Falcon 9 rocket, during a launch window beginning in the last quarter of 2020, CEO and co-founder John Gedmark announced today in a Medium post. SpaceX confirmed the deal in an email pointing to the post.

“We’re excited about what this means for Alaska, one of the most rugged states in America, and by extension, one of the hardest to serve with broadband internet,” Gedmark said.

Satellite broadband internet promises to connect billions of people in the world who don’t currently have easy, cheap access to global networks.

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By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributor to GeekWire and Universe Today, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," past president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing.

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