Amazon to open Kuiper Internet satellite factory

Amazon to open Kuiper Internet satellite factory

Amazon to open Kuiper Internet satellite factory

Rendering of United Launch Alliance’ Atlas V rocket carrying the Amazon satellites.


heroine Told On Thursday, the project will open a new plant in a Seattle suburb to build satellites for Kuiper.

Unveiled in 2019, Project Kuiper, Amazon plans to build a network of 3,236 satellites in low Earth orbit to provide high-speed broadband Internet. Amazon saw a significant milestone In 2020 when the Federal Communications Commission authorized the satellite Internet system.

To meet its goal of putting more than 3,000 satellites into orbit, Amazon will need to build one to three satellites “every single day, maybe even a little more than that,” Amazon Devices chief Dave Limp said in an interview. . Washington Post on Thursday.

“We have to build manufacturing capabilities that look more like consumer electronics or automobiles and less like the traditional space industry,” Limp said.

Although Amazon hasn’t said when the Kuiper launch campaign will begin, FCC rules require the company to deploy half of its planned satellites within six years — about 1,600 — into orbit by July 2026.

heroine where is The project plans to invest more than $10 billion in building Kuiper, and it already has a 219,000-square-foot research and development facility located in Redmond, Washington. The Redmond site has developed prototypes and assisted with commercial satellite production, “but for the project to fulfill our vision, we need to work on a much larger scale,” Amazon said.

The new 172,000-square-foot factory will be located in the nearby city of Kirkland, Washington. The company said it is expected to create more than 200 jobs in the Puget Sound area.

Limp said the additional plant capacity will enable Amazon to enter the second phase of its manufacturing process.

Since receiving FCC approval, Amazon has accelerated work on its first two prototype satellites, KuiperSat-1 and KuiperSat-2.

heroine Said in November 2021 That it hopes to launch those prototypes with ABL Space on its RS1 rocket in late 2022. But earlier this month, Amazon Told United Launch Alliance will take the satellites on their maiden flight, delaying the launch to early next year.

Limp said Thursday that Amazon has begun integration and final assembly of its first two prototype satellites, and they should be “done by the end of Q4.”

— CNBC’s Michael Sheetz contributed to this report.

watch: How SpaceX’s Starlink satellite is taking Amazon’s Project Kuiper to the Internet

Amazon to open Kuiper Internet satellite factory

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