Amazon buys Atlas V rockets to orbit its Kuiper constellation – SpaceFlight Insider

A rendering of an Atlas V rocket with Amazon's logo on the payload fairing. Credit: Amazon

A rendering of an Atlas V rocket with Amazon’s emblem on the payload fairing. Credit score: Amazon

On Monday, April 19, Amazon introduced that it bought 9 Atlas V rocket flights from Launch for the orbital insertion of its Kuiper satellites.

Undertaking Kuiper is Amazon’s reply to privatized satellite-provided web, such because the SpaceX Starlink system. Its hope is to offer low cost and dependable high-speed, low-latency broadband web to unserved and underserved communities across the globe.

“Undertaking Kuiper will assist bridge the digital divide throughout america and around the globe, and we couldn’t be happy to be working with Amazon to help the initiative,” said ULA CEO Tory Bruno. “ULA is targeted on serving our buyer’s missions and offering dependable, progressive launch options. We look ahead to launching these vital missions.”

Given that almost all of ULA’s clients are NASA and nationwide safety missions, this announcement symbolizes an enormous win within the realm of business clients for the corporate.

Whereas each ULA and , Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos’ area firm, are each constructing and growing new orbital-class rockets of their very own, many had been left questioning why Amazon would select the Atlas V. The FCC set a deadline of 2025 for the corporate to position all of its Kuiper satellites into . By contracting with ULA, Amazon needed to make sure the satellites could be positioned in orbit by or earlier than that deadline.

Whereas each ULA and Blue Origin have Vulcan and New Glenn, respectively, in improvement, the Atlas V has a confirmed monitor file of unimaginable reliability.

The precise launch dates aren’t identified, nonetheless ULA introduced that every flight will liftoff from the Canaveral House Pressure Station in Florida. Neither firm has mentioned what configuration of Atlas V will likely be required for launch. Nonetheless, Amazon has mentioned it intends to launch round 3,236 satellites into low orbit to make up the total constellation.

File photo: An Atlas V rocket launches the NROL-101 payload from Space Launch Complex 41 on Nov. 13, 2020. Credit: Matt Haskell / Spaceflight Insider

File : An Atlas V rocket launches the NROL-101 payload from House Launch Advanced 41 on Nov. 13, 2020. Credit score: Matt Haskell / Spaceflight Insider

Tagged: Amazon Blue Origin Jeff Bezos Kuiper Lead Tales NASA The Vary United Launch Alliance

Cullen Desforges

Having a -long curiosity in crewed area flight, Desforges’ ardour materialized on a household trip in 1999 when he was in a position see the launch of House Shuttle Discovery on STS-96. Since then, Desforges has been an fanatic of area efforts. He lived in Orlando, Florida for a yr, throughout which era he had the chance to witness the flights of the historic CRS-Four and EFT-1 missions in particular person at Cape Canaveral. He earned his Pilot Certificates in 2017, holds a level in Aviation Administration, and at the moment works as an Operations Analyst within the aviation trade in Georgia.

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