Amazon is going to launch thousands of Internet satellites

Amazon is going to launch thousands of Internet satellites

Amazon wants to send more than 3,000 satellites in low orbit around the globe to provide internet to few and unserved communities worldwide. The initiative will be named Project Cooper.

The plans came to light after GeekWire discovered that Kuiper Systems LLC had recently submitted three applications to the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). Among other things, ITU is responsible for coordinating all the satellites that are placed in orbit around the earth.

In September last year, there were already rumours that Amazon had the ambition to send satellites into space. The internet giant has now confirmed that Kuiper Systems is indeed one of his projects.

Project Cooper

Project Cooper is a new initiative to launch a constellation of Low Earth Orbit satellites, which will provide low latency and fast broadband connectivity to few and unserved communities around the world, it sounds in response to The Verge.

In total, Amazon wants to send 3,236 satellites into space, in three different orbits around the earth: 784 satellites at 591 kilometres, 1,296 satellites at 610 kilometres and 1,156 satellites at 629 kilometres altitude. Together, the satellites theoretically cover 95% of the world’s population.


Amazon calls it a long-term project that will serve tens of millions of people who do not have basic broadband access today. We look forward to working on this initiative with companies that share this common vision, says Amazon.

It is not yet clear whether the company will build the satellites itself or leave it to a partner. With Blue Origin, Amazon boss Jeff Bezos certainly owns his own space company, but at the moment Amazon would still leave all options open.

In addition, communication with the ground is also necessary via stations on earth. Last year, Amazon already launched AWS Ground Station, a cloud computing service that facilitates communication between satellites in space and ground stations on earth.

No timing

Amazon does not yet announce a timeframe for the space plans. In any case, it will first have to obtain approval from the US Federal Communications Commission. According to The Verge, the latter will look at challenges such as orbital congestion and what will happen to the satellites after they are taken out of service.

Several companies have already led Amazon in its ambition to offer internet via satellites. SpaceX wants to send out more than 12,000 satellites, OneWeb has plans to launch 650 satellites and Facebook is also building its own internet satellite.

This news article was automatically translated from Dutch to give a head start. All news articles after September 1, 2019 are written in native English and NOT translated. All our background stories are written in native English as well. For more information read our launch article.