The Future Of … The Next Frontier in Satellites

Satellites have been the domain of governments and very wealthy corporations, but the increasing involvement of private companies and advances in technologies mean that the democratization of space is fast approaching.

To view the full article please register below:

First Name (required)

Last Name (required)

Your Email (required)

The Future Of … The Next Frontier in Satellites

The Future Of … The Next Frontier in Satellites

Today’s satellites—numbering about 2,000—are located 12,000 to 20,000 miles above the Earth’s surface, circling in a geosynchronous orbit (i.e., remaining in the same spot above the Earth at all times). Their uses are many, but fall under four main categories: Telecommunications, Earth Observation, Science and National Security.

Until now, satellites have been the domain of governments and very wealthy corporations. While that may remain true for some time, the increasing involvement of private companies and advances in technologies mean that the democratization of space is fast approaching.

  1. Satellites are Getting Smaller and Cheaper

The future of satellites is with smaller, more numerous and cheaper satellites operating in a low- and medium-Earth orbit. Because they are smaller and will operate at much lower orbits, the costs of building and launching satellites are decreasing.

Based on plans by over a dozen companies (e.g., SpaceX, Blue Origin, Boeing, etc.), there may be more than 10,000 additional satellites in the next decade or so. These efforts are mostly designed to build a broadband Internet connection that will make data transmission faster and enable Internet access to the entire globe.

  1. Personal Satellites

CubeSat is the latest iteration of satellite, first created in the early 2000s. The CubeSat is roughly a four-inch cube whose costs, some project, will decrease to as little as $3,000. CubeSats have already been launched by NASA and Boeing, with NASA offering free launches to educational groups, science missions and nonprofits.

  1. Satellites Built in Space

Satellites must be constructed to withstand the forces and vibrations of a space launch, imposing limits on their capabilities. Efforts are now underway to develop the means to launch small components and raw materials into space so that satellites can be built on an orbiting assembly platform.

  1. The Satellite Network

Satellites are generally limited to sending and receiving signals to and from stations on Earth. In the future, satellite networks will emerge, in which hundreds of satellites will be divided into groups designed to collect different data, with each group communicating amongst themselves, while a “group lead” satellite communicates out to a second layer of geostationary satellites responsible for communication with users on Earth.

Such a network could give users real-time access to data as it’s collected. Can you imagine what the algo traders will do with this?!

In the end, the next phase in satellites will be as transformative as the first phase, enabling 5G that will power the IoT and driverless technologies, provide the data to make farmers in developing countries more productive, increase water use efficiencies, provide real-time data in the battle against climate change and possibly help Wall Street analysts produce better research insights.

For more of The Future Of…, click here!

See referenced disclosure (2) at http://blog.americanportfolios.com/disclosures/ 

About The Author

Melissa Dolber-Grappone

 

Vice President of Marketing and Corporate Communications 
631.439.4600, ext. 108 

Subscribe

Subscribe to receive a monthly recap of our three most popular posts.

Recent Videos

Loading...