SpaceX launches rocket with Jupiter 3, the world’s largest commercial satellite

2023-07-31 18:50:00

Update (7/31/2023) – HA

the huge satellite 9.2 ton Jupiter 3 operated by Hughes Network System was finally launched by the agency SpaceX after two days of delay. With the aim of increasing internet coverage in rural areas of the US and providing connectivity services to civil and military aircraft, the idea is that the device will offer connection speeds of up to 100 Mbps per user, increasing the company’s previous limit by four times.

The satellite also known as EchoStar XXIV has deployed its 14 solar panels and is ready to send and receive signals and will enter service at the end of the year. The idea is to promote an alternative to a large number of small and cheap satellites, such as those used by Starlink, OneWeb and Amazon Kuiper.

The two technologies can complement each other, of course, as Hughes Networks System’s Fusion service, for example, combines communications from Hughes’ 4G network and the Jupiter geostationary satellites with those from the smaller OneWeb satellites.

The reusable satellite is 8.2 meters long and 38.7 meters wide with solar panels open and will synchronously track the Earth’s rotation in a geostationary orbit above the equator at an altitude of 35,800 kilometers. It offers a general communication capacity of 500 gigabits per second, promising to improve latency.

Original text (7/26/2023)

SpaceX, Elon Musk’s space services company, will perform an attempt to launch the Falcon Heavy rocket early on Thursday (27) to take Jupiter 3 – the largest commercial satellite for telecommunications ever built – to Earth orbit.

The aircraft will take off at 00:04 on Thursday, July 27, on Pad 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, located in Florida, United States. Fifteen minutes before launch, a live coverage stream will be broadcast on official SpaceX channels. You can check the event through the player below:

According to the US Space Force’s 45th Weather Squadron, there’s an 85% chance that the weather will be favorable for launch. Weather factors are the most common causes for delays in space missions, but considering that the northern hemisphere is in its summer, the expectation is that the takeoff will take place this morning.

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Built by Maxar Technologies, Jupiter 3 is operated by Hughes Network Systems, a provider of satellite communications services to businesses and government agencies. The satellite will be aimed at customers in Latin America and the United States. We are talking about a 10-ton object, that is, the largest geostationary satellite ever built.

Before launch, SpaceX published, on its official Twitter profile, an image showing the 27 Merlin rocket engines mounted on Falcon Heavy. Check out:

Falcon Heavy completed its first mission in February 2018 after carrying a Tesla Roadster — the automaker’s electric sports car — to Earth orbit on a test flight, and since then, it has carried out few launches due to delays in the development of telecommunication satellites that would carry into space.

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