Author Topic: SpaceMobile Constellation (AST & Science)  (Read 56057 times)

Offline su27k

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Re: SpaceMobile Constellation (AST & Science)
« Reply #20 on: 12/28/2020 03:38 am »
I wonder if AST has launch contracts for their first 20 satellites?

From the CNBC article:

Quote
AST plans to launch the satellites into orbit at an altitude of 700 kilometers — or almost twice as high as the International Space Station’s orbit. Avellan declined to name any rocket companies that AST has contracts with, instead describing launch as a buyer’s market. AST’s investor presentation named Elon Musk’s SpaceX, European ArianeGroup, Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin, Russian GK Launch and Indian PSLV as potential launch providers.

Offline Danderman

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Re: SpaceMobile Constellation (AST & Science)
« Reply #21 on: 12/30/2020 05:34 am »
I wonder if AST has launch contracts for their first 20 satellites?

From the CNBC article:

Quote
AST plans to launch the satellites into orbit at an altitude of 700 kilometers — or almost twice as high as the International Space Station’s orbit. Avellan declined to name any rocket companies that AST has contracts with, instead describing launch as a buyer’s market. AST’s investor presentation named Elon Musk’s SpaceX, European ArianeGroup, Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin, Russian GK Launch and Indian PSLV as potential launch providers.

Common sense would indicate that AST does not have launch contracts, based on the non-answer. How does AST plan to put up a large constellation Real Soon Now without launch contracts?

Of course, I am ignoring the 2022 launch of a test satellite. That will probably go as a rideshare on one of the potential launch services mentioned above. I assume that contract is a done deal.

Also, the effective date of any launch contract would be after the SPAC has raised money. There may be provisional contracts based on a relatively small down payment, but nothing serious until AST has generated funds from their new offering.
« Last Edit: 12/30/2020 09:29 am by Danderman »

Offline Danderman

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Offline Danderman

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Re: SpaceMobile Constellation (AST & Science)
« Reply #23 on: 01/05/2021 05:37 am »
https://twitter.com/AvellanAbel/status/1345189123158638593

BlueWalker 3 will have a mass of 1.5 tons.

Offline Asteroza

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Re: SpaceMobile Constellation (AST & Science)
« Reply #24 on: 01/05/2021 06:41 am »
A recent SEC filing concerning AST:

https://sec.report/Document/0001213900-20-044208/prem14a2020_newprovid.htm

There's a lowrez shot of sat in there. That's a whole lot of folded panels there...

Offline Danderman

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Offline Danderman

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Offline Danderman

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Re: SpaceMobile Constellation (AST & Science)
« Reply #27 on: 04/15/2021 04:08 pm »
The hive mind seems to have missed this: SpaceMobile is now publicly traded under the symbol ASTS.

Offline su27k

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Re: SpaceMobile Constellation (AST & Science)
« Reply #28 on: 04/21/2021 02:45 am »
This tweet has a rendering of their satellite:

https://twitter.com/AST_SpaceMobile/status/1384320948468396034
« Last Edit: 04/21/2021 02:47 am by su27k »

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Re: SpaceMobile Constellation (AST & Science)
« Reply #29 on: 04/21/2021 08:01 am »
Image from the video.
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline Asteroza

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Re: SpaceMobile Constellation (AST & Science)
« Reply #30 on: 04/21/2021 11:19 pm »
Interesting, sparse/mesh antenna with nothing that looks like local nodes. They had previously talked about aggregate satellites, so I had thought they would effectively have a docked swarm of cubesats for the antenna, but on the face of it that doesn't appear to be the case judging from the render. Just looks like repeating holed tiles, so perhaps no deployment mechanism and expect something else to assemble the array?

Offline gongora

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Re: SpaceMobile Constellation (AST & Science)
« Reply #31 on: 04/21/2021 11:25 pm »
They deploy, and there isn't any aggregation that I'm aware of.

Offline gongora

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Re: SpaceMobile Constellation (AST & Science)
« Reply #32 on: 04/21/2021 11:58 pm »
Image from the video.

That side should be the solar arrays, with the antenna structure on the earth facing side.  They say their solar arrays are around 100kW

Offline Danderman

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Re: SpaceMobile Constellation (AST & Science)
« Reply #33 on: 05/18/2021 12:54 am »
Rumors from Reddit:

AST to launch on Soyuz in late 2021, as a secondary payload, but the primary payload is delayed.

Offline Danderman

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Re: SpaceMobile Constellation (AST & Science)
« Reply #34 on: 06/19/2021 06:01 am »
Looking at this image, it looks like the satellite has a unibody design, ie the solar arrays are glued to back of the earth facing phased array antenna (so to speak). Since the solar arrays don’t seem to be deployable, this means that they will rarely face the Sun, and at high beta angles when most satellites are receiving sunlight almost 24 hours a day, the AST arrays would face away from the Sun. Perhaps there is something I am missing, but it seems that AST is going to have problems with their planned 100Kw power generation, except for short periods at low Beta angles.

Note that Starlink faced a similar issue, and chose a deployable  array, which is what is causing the problems for astronomers.  AST arrays won’t face the Earth, which is good for astronomy.

Offline gongora

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Re: SpaceMobile Constellation (AST & Science)
« Reply #35 on: 06/19/2021 04:32 pm »
Note that Starlink faced a similar issue, and chose a deployable  array, which is what is causing the problems for astronomers.  AST arrays won’t face the Earth, which is good for astronomy.

The side of the SpaceMobile sats that faces Earth will still reflect light, and these things are huge.

Offline su27k

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Re: SpaceMobile Constellation (AST & Science)
« Reply #36 on: 06/27/2021 02:33 am »
Op-Ed | Who wants to step up to a $10 billion risk?

Quote
But the greater problem is that rather than seek a license directly from the FCC for their enormous satellites, AST & Science got a license for its system from Papua New Guinea (PNG). This is more than a “flag of convenience” situation, however, as PNG has signed neither the 1971 Liability Convention nor the 1974 Registration Convention. While PNG has signed the 1967 Outer Space Treaty (OST), those latter two treaties are what put actual “meat on the bone” of the OST. Choosing not to sign these leaves PNG outside of the sphere of countries which have agreed to both norms of governance and resolution procedures for outer space disputes.

In short, PNG has not stepped up to accept specific international responsibility or liability for the activities of commercial entities it has licensed. Under the Liability Convention, countries agree to be liable for any damages caused in space “due to its fault or the fault of persons for whom it is responsible.” AST & Science recently admitted to the FCC that PNG has not “acceded” to the Registration Convention but claimed that PNG would voluntarily register the constellation. This narrative brushes over the fact that voluntarily registering the constellation, which PNG has only done once previously, isn’t the same as taking legal responsibility for it.

Offline Danderman

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Re: SpaceMobile Constellation (AST & Science)
« Reply #37 on: 06/30/2021 01:09 am »
Note that Starlink faced a similar issue, and chose a deployable  array, which is what is causing the problems for astronomers.  AST arrays won’t face the Earth, which is good for astronomy.

The side of the SpaceMobile sats that faces Earth will still reflect light, and these things are huge.

It’s unclear how reflective the phased array antennas will be.

And, as long as the solar panels are affixed to the back of the ground facing antennas, astronomers will never see glare from the solar panels. The problem is affixing solar panels to the back of a ground facing antenna means the solar panels will rarely see the sun.  Trying to provide power to a spacecraft that has to operate continuously is difficult enough, but if the solar panels cannot be deployed and pointed at the sun, then AST is going to have to do something very clever to address that issue.

Offline panyagua

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Re: SpaceMobile Constellation (AST & Science)
« Reply #38 on: 07/19/2021 01:06 pm »
Op-Ed | Who wants to step up to a $10 billion risk?


Can anyone shed more light on the status of this issue?  Looking at the FCC filing https://www.fcc.report/IBFS/SAT-APL-20201028-00126 which was filed 2020-10-28, has a status of "Action Taken Public Notice".  I have read each of the petitions and SpaceMobile's response.  However, I cannot tell if the FCC has approved this or not.  Given the SpaceNews article is dated 2021-06-25 can we assume there has not been approval? I do see that the other Experimental License are currently pending perhaps that is what the author is referring to?

Offline gongora

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Re: SpaceMobile Constellation (AST & Science)
« Reply #39 on: 07/20/2021 02:11 am »
Op-Ed | Who wants to step up to a $10 billion risk?


Can anyone shed more light on the status of this issue?  Looking at the FCC filing https://www.fcc.report/IBFS/SAT-APL-20201028-00126 which was filed 2020-10-28, has a status of "Action Taken Public Notice".  I have read each of the petitions and SpaceMobile's response.  However, I cannot tell if the FCC has approved this or not.  Given the SpaceNews article is dated 2021-06-25 can we assume there has not been approval? I do see that the other Experimental License are currently pending perhaps that is what the author is referring to?

It was "accepted for filing" in November, which is when the FCC has looked to see if the application is complete enough to start processing it, and public commenting on it can start.  It can stay in that status for quite a while (anywhere from days to years).

 

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