OneWeb announced that it has signed a pact with NewSpace India Limited (NSIL), the commercial arm of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), and will be using NSIL’s Indian-built PSLV (Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle) and the heavier GSLV-MkIII (Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle) as the platforms for launching all of its satellites in India in 2022.
“ISRO has built formidable launch capabilities, and India is part of the select group of countries to have a history of successful launches. OneWeb will be delighted to use ISRO’s proven platforms to fulfil its vision of taking broadband connectivity across the earth, oceans and sky. We believe this initiative will further the Prime Minister’s vision of making India a key hub in the global space ecosystem and also boost the India-UK strategic partnership. We look forward to a deeper engagement with NSIL/ISRO over the coming years,” said Sunil Bharti Mittal, Chairman, OneWeb.
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K. Sivan, Chairman of ISRO, said, “We are making tremendous progress, and India is advancing its space capabilities, and we look forward to working together”.
The non-binding Letter of Intent was unveiled at the launch of the Indian Space Association (ISpA). OneWeb is amongst the founding members of ISpA, which strives to be the collective voice of space and satellite companies in India and will work with stakeholders across for the development of India’s space ecosystem.
OneWeb is also building its initial constellation of 648 LEO satellites and has already put 322 satellites into orbit. Services will begin this year in the Arctic region, including Alaska, Canada, and the UK.
OneWeb will undertake its 11th launch on 14 October with a further 36 satellites on board. In under a year, the company has passed the halfway stage of its first-generation constellation, with 322 satellites now in space.