Latest in Directv

Image credit:

Hard luck for satellite industry last week


As much as we love to live in our own little bubbles, consuming gobs of bandwidth and never giving back, there's a lot that goes on behind the scenes -- as evidenced by that recent internet hacking attempt that was rebuffed so brilliantly. That's why it pains us to hear of recent satellite failures that are not only damaging to the companies involved to the tune of millions of dollars, but could also even impact us in the long run. Totally unacceptable. Sea Launch got the travesties started with a dramatic explosion at its ocean launch platform and the complete disintegration of the Sea Launch Zenit 3SL rocket that was carrying a Boeing-built communications satellite designed to bring broadband to Europe, Africa, the Middle East, the Indian subcontinent and Asia. Not only does this put the kibosh on those plans, but could also impact DirecTV satellite launches later this year. The other bad news comes from GlobalStar, whose recent SEC filing reveals problems with S-band antennas across its satellite fleet, possibly due to irradiation in orbit. The upshot of this is that even with eight spare satellites being launched in 2007, GlobalStar's 2-way phone coverage is in serious jeopardy, with call quality and times already on the outs, and no-coverage patches soon to emerge. There's no fix in sight yet, so GlobalStar might have to accelerate plans to launch its next-gen wave of satellites, which could seriously impact the bottom line. So peep the Sea Launch explosion video after the break, mourn the hardship it implies for the satellite industry, and then go back to your own little "crossing the street while listening to your iPod" world.

[Via Techdirt]

Read - Sea Launch explosion
Read - GlobalStar service problems

From around the web

ear iconeye icontext filevr