Aerospace giant Boeing could be the next company to launch and operate a Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite broadband service, after the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) belatedly circulated the company’s 2017 application for vote last week. According to Reuters, Boeing seeks to launch and operate 147 V-band satellites to provide ‘broadband internet and communications services to residential consumers, governmental and professional users across the United States, Puerto Rico and US Virgin Islands’.
Back in March 2018 the FCC granted Elon Musk-backed SpaceX the authority to deploy and operate a non-geostationary orbit (NGSO) satellite system comprising 4,425 satellites operating in the Ku- and Ka-bands for the provision of a fixed-satellite service (FSS) constellation. Subsequently, in April this year, the FCC voted to approve a SpaceX plan to deploy 2,814 Starlink satellites at a lower earth orbit than planned; the satellites will now operate in the 540km-570km range, rather than the 1,100km-1,300km range.
Interestingly, in 2019 SpaceX urged the FCC to reject Boeing’s plan saying it presented a ‘clear danger of harmful interference’ to other systems.