There is a New Internet Provider That Wants to Compete With SpaceX’s Starlink




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Last November, European Union Commissioner, Thierry Breton, released plans for a new satellite constellation dubbed the Infrastructure for Resilience, Interconnectivity, and Security by Satellite (IRIS). 

“It heightens Europe’s role as a true space power. With a clear ambition and sense of direction. The efforts and energy made at the European level to move this initiative forward at record speed also reflect, in my view, the importance of IRIS in an increasingly contested geostrategic environment. Space is indeed a much-coveted area in which the European Union must guarantee its essential interests. And our space technologies have become strategic capabilities for our citizens, for the resilience of our economies, and of course for our armies,” said Thierry Breton.

On Tuesday, most major European satellite companies announced they will be bidding on a proposed satellite constellation enabling a global communication to rival that of SpaceX’s Starlink. The European Union requested help establishing said constellation to provide secure connections for government and military services from low-Earth orbit.

“The open consortium will be governed by Airbus Defence and Space, Eutelsat, Hispasat, SES, and Thales Alenia Space. The consortium will also rely on the core team of the following companies: Deutsche Telekom, OHB, Orange, Hisdesat, Telespazio, and Thales. Together, they will aim to create a state-of-the-art satellite constellation based on a multi-orbit architecture that would be interoperable with the terrestrial ecosystem.”

The bidders are forming a partnership to bring “a new secure and resilient connectivity infrastructure to European governments, businesses, and citizens.” The team strives to incorporate collaboration throughout all European companies in order to bring as many people together as possible, including smaller and startup companies, to make this goal a reality.

The estimated budget for its construction is set at 2.4 billion euros, not including contributions from the European Space Agency and other private investors. These additional amounts have yet to be determined but resources estimate the entire project could total around 6 billion euros to complete. 

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