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OneWeb files for Chapter 11

bxr140

Active Member
Nov 18, 2014
2,684
3,587
Bay Area
I think most of our oneweb discussion is in other threads, but in an attempt to not clog them up...

I randomly came across this photo and found it pretty interesting (and then searched and found the second one). Lots of stock launch campaign stuff going on (like the explosion proof camera on the left :p) but mostly just cool from the satellite hardware perspective. These are some of the best public domain photos of their antenna blades I've ever seen.

IMG_8589.0.jpeg


OneWeb_Satellites_pre-launch.jpg
 

YoungStranger

Member
Feb 10, 2012
187
75
Telford UK
Hold on... Now Trump apparently is going to block sale due to "national security concerns". Not sure how a bankrupt private company already in partnership with a foreign defence company (Airbus) and formerly financed by a Japanese Investment bank can be so... However this may just be a face saving excuse. The Telegraph is close to the Tory Government and the person behind the Scheme, Dominic Cummings may be covering his own arse. Is Oneweb a national security issue for the US, given that the UK has a close intelligence and defence relationship?
Donald Trump could block OneWeb sale over national security concerns
 

Cosmacelf

Well-Known Member
Mar 6, 2013
8,405
20,027
San Diego
Yeah, doesn't make sense that the US would try to block the UK from investing in OneWeb. Frankly, you've got to be suspicious of any headline with the word "Trump" in it. Especially one that says "could". Kinda like people using the word "Tesla" in a made up story to drive clicks, same thing with any story with the word "Trump" in it. And one that says "Trump could..." is particularly click baitish. Trump "could" do a lot of things, but will he?
 

YoungStranger

Member
Feb 10, 2012
187
75
Telford UK
Gets more confusing. I think it actually makes sense for Mittal as an Indian Tech entrepreneur, to get involved.. they have a huge market and need for wireless internet.. the Indians have a space programme with launch vehicles and a strategic agenda .. cant see the point of the UK being involved though.. and if there are security concerns, India is a bigger risk for the US than the UK.

Bloomberg - Are you a robot?
 

Cosmacelf

Well-Known Member
Mar 6, 2013
8,405
20,027
San Diego
Honestly, if the UK wanted their own GPS system, they should ask SpaceX to build it. A GPS satellite really isn't that complicated, in theory. The complexity comes from engineering really precise atomic clocks and satellite engineering in general. Given that Elon has stated that building satellites is where the real money is, I wouldn't be surprised if SpaceX would take on such a contract.
 

bxr140

Active Member
Nov 18, 2014
2,684
3,587
Bay Area
Gets more confusing. I think it actually makes sense for Mittal as an Indian Tech entrepreneur, to get involved.. they have a huge market and need for wireless internet.. the Indians have a space programme with launch vehicles and a strategic agenda ..

I like the creativity, but I'm not sure satellite internet is practical for India: There's ~3x the people in a land mass ~1/3 the size of the US (for instance). That's not ideal for a satellite network...and it also makes the business case for expanding terrestrial wireless easier to close.

Obviously an investment play is a totally different story, regardless whether its to pick up a [theoretically revenue generating] global network for pennies or if its just for the spectrum shenanigans.
 

bxr140

Active Member
Nov 18, 2014
2,684
3,587
Bay Area
Honestly, if the UK wanted their own GPS system, they should ask SpaceX to build it.

I'm not sure that checks out. OneWeb is a UK company (its the Merrit Island manufacturing shop that's a JV between OneWeb and Airbus). A national GPS constellation is a national asset, and any government would rather spend more money onshore than less money offshore for such a project.

Also remember that SSTL built the Galileo payloads, and of course they've built many satellites as well. Even though they're now part of Airbus I have to imagine there's a way to have them prime a UKGPS system.
 

Cosmacelf

Well-Known Member
Mar 6, 2013
8,405
20,027
San Diego
I'm not sure that checks out. OneWeb is a UK company (its the Merrit Island manufacturing shop that's a JV between OneWeb and Airbus). A national GPS constellation is a national asset, and any government would rather spend more money onshore than less money offshore for such a project.

Also remember that SSTL built the Galileo payloads, and of course they've built many satellites as well. Even though they're now part of Airbus I have to imagine there's a way to have them prime a UKGPS system.

My understanding is that it is only nominally a UK company. Isn't most of their workforce in the US?
 

Cosmacelf

Well-Known Member
Mar 6, 2013
8,405
20,027
San Diego
Scott Manley is a rational person, so of course it makes no sense. The article below gives the political and ideological background.. driven by the same obsessives that invented Brexit... mainly Dominic Cummings.. a sort of Steve Bannon figure to the more pliable Johnson..
UK’s Rival to Galileo: A Brexit Farce – Byline Times

That article is just so sad. I really hope it isn’t actually true, but given there is no other explanation out there ... sigh.
 

Cosmacelf

Well-Known Member
Mar 6, 2013
8,405
20,027
San Diego
Interesting. It’s all about spectrum rights:

“Elon Musk is not only challenging OneWeb for a LEO broadband business, he's also challenging them for the exact same spectrum in the Ku-band — and he filed second. The fact that OneWeb has been revived means they're still stuck in this sort of junior position."”

“"It was those rules that that prompted OneWeb to launch its last batch of satellites two days before they filed for bankruptcy, because they wanted to hit the 10% milestone and keep their options open," Quilty said. "But if OneWeb doesn't get up half their satellites by June of 2023, their license gets squashed."

OneWeb currently has 74 of its planned 648 satellites in orbit. It's unclear how quickly OneWeb might be able to resume production, as Quilty noted that the company fired most of its employees, including the entire technical staff, down to a skeleton crew.”

OK, so I predict SpaceX will just run roughshod over the Ku band, pointing out, quite rightly, that Oneweb doesn’t have a functioning satellite business yet. They then can cut a deal down the road with the U.K. and the Indian company to give them a deal on Starlink communications in their countries (Starlink won’t be able to get a comms license in the U.K. anyways, when U.K. owns a chunk of OneWeb). And Oneweb quietly disappears. That’s my guess anyways.
 
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YoungStranger

Member
Feb 10, 2012
187
75
Telford UK
Interesting. It’s all about spectrum rights:

“Elon Musk is not only challenging OneWeb for a LEO broadband business, he's also challenging them for the exact same spectrum in the Ku-band — and he filed second. The fact that OneWeb has been revived means they're still stuck in this sort of junior position."”

“"It was those rules that that prompted OneWeb to launch its last batch of satellites two days before they filed for bankruptcy, because they wanted to hit the 10% milestone and keep their options open," Quilty said. "But if OneWeb doesn't get up half their satellites by June of 2023, their license gets squashed."

OneWeb currently has 74 of its planned 648 satellites in orbit. It's unclear how quickly OneWeb might be able to resume production, as Quilty noted that the company fired most of its employees, including the entire technical staff, down to a skeleton crew.”

OK, so I predict SpaceX will just run roughshod over the Ku band, pointing out, quite rightly, that Oneweb doesn’t have a functioning satellite business yet. They then can cut a deal down the road with the U.K. and the Indian company to give them a deal on Starlink communications in their countries (Starlink won’t be able to get a comms license in the U.K. anyways, when U.K. owns a chunk of OneWeb). And Oneweb quietly disappears. That’s my guess anyways.
 

YoungStranger

Member
Feb 10, 2012
187
75
Telford UK
I would like to think that they would get a Comms licence whatever, as it is a liberal society.. but dont think OneWeb is likely anyway. Elon has a lot of sway in the UK anyway.. he has been given generating licences anyway and could always tangle a gigafactory in the government eyes
 

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