OneWeb and Airbus Defence and Space form OneWeb Satellites Joint Venture
[Via Satellite 01-27-2016] OneWeb and Airbus Defence and Space, in preparation for OneWeb’s constellation of 648 small telecommunications satellites in Low Earth Orbit (LEO), have created a joint venture named OneWeb Satellites to handle spacecraft manufacturing. OneWeb Satellites is equally owned between both companies, and will design and build 900 satellites for OneWeb to provide global high-speed Internet from space. Brian Holz will be CEO of the joint venture.
OneWeb Satellites will undertake design activities for the entire satellite fleet and the manufacture of the first 10 flight models will take place in France, with mass production of the operational satellites planned for North America. Each satellite will have a mass of less than 150 kilograms. Arianespace and Virgin Galactic are the launch providers for the satellites, starting from 2018. The spacecraft will reach their orbital positions using electrical propulsion.
Additionally, OneWeb Satellites will be able to build satellites, platforms and equipment for other operators. Airbus Defence and Space will have rights to market these products.