The satellite operator SES has chosen SpaceX and ULA to launch two satellites that will substitute the C-band capacity in the US, which the Federal Communications Commission is rescheduling to support the 5G internet connectivity.
The agreement between SES and SpaceX also entails acquiring another satellite, which is not under the same order. SES has revealed that the United Launch Alliance will deploy two satellites manufactured by Boeing via one Atlas 5 rocket in the coming two years. On the other hand, SpaceX will be deploying two satellites via Northrop Grumman on Falcon 9 rocket in the same period.
SES is keen to scrap off any satellite and rocket dealers that are non-US so that the replacement and relocation costs for the FCC suppliers. SES articulated that it is beginning charity at home in a move that will ensure the split of the 500 megahertz spectrum to 200 by the end of 2023.
SES, Eutelsat, and Intelsat are under siege to ensure that they utilize the US companies to substitute their satellites and the subsequent facilities and services. The firms explained to the FCC that they would opt for US satellite operators only if the FCC allows them to sell the C-band satellites privately. This concept would allow the firms to obtain a high of $60 billion in cash.
In the light of congressional rejection to the private sale, the FCC decided to publicly auction the satellite spectrum so that the funds from the deal flow directly to the US treasury. Nonetheless, the FCC resorted to auctioning regulations needing the bidders to pay for relocation costs so that the satellite operators efficiently service them for televised devices that require a low spectral range.
The chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee supervising the FCC, Sen. John Kennedy, communicated with FCC’s chair Ajit Pai telling the commission to motivate the satellite operators to buy their replacement resources and stock from US firms.
Kennedy explained that if any of the satellite operators resorted to foreign satellite companies, they would have to work out a way to ensure the money cycles back to the American economy. Pai rewrote to Kennedy that they have no power to object to the foreign firms that these satellite operators have affiliations.
SES has resorted to stay away from political injunctions by identifying satellite and launch service auctioneers among US companies. SES has since lauded ULA’s Atlas 5 rocket as being an American space vehicle for American launches.
Additionally, SES reiterates that they chose SpaceX considering their pursuit and desire to put America on the roadmap of space dominance. SES intends to order two more satellites following their detailed plan to the FCC. So far, SES has spent $1.67 billion on replacement satellites, launches, ground facilities, and other expenses.
To sum up, SES is the process of leaving its spectrum to obtain the $3.97 billion for quick relocation. This sum will come from the winning bidders for these FCC contracts. SpaceX and ULA are happy to work with SES to deliver their services.