All well and good
But what's an ESA satellite doing providing a service to the US and Canada for? Oh, right, the money.
It's the one with 'naive' on the back.
The "heaviest and most powerful telecommunications satellite ever launched" was yesterday carried aloft atop an Ariane 5 ECA lifter from the European Space Agency's Korou spaceport in French Guiana. Yesterday's launch of the TerreStar 1 satellite. Pic: ESA The 7,055kg TerreStar 1 blasted off at 17:52 GMT, destined for a …
Thats an awesome photo although the video wasn't so good.
There seems to be more than a bit of PR overkill gone into this naming it the heaviest and most powerful telecommunications satellite ever launched. Its a bit like saying I've got the fastest PC ever constructed that stands on my desk. (As I've never had a faster PC on my desk I can truthfully claim this, yet its not as impressive as first impressions of the wording aim to imply). I guess they want to sell satellite launches although its not as if they have many competitors.
...he said all the important keywords: Redefining, Landscape, New Paradigm, Mobile, Leverage, Integrated, True Ubiquity.
I'm disappointed there wasn't any Blue Sky or Outside-The-Box Thinking. Or even Outside-The-Blue-Sky Thinking, given the context. But still, it must be good.
"With the successful launch of TerreStar 1, we are *redefining* the mobile communications landscape. We are creating a new *paradigm* in mobile broadband network services and devices that will *leverage* our *integrated* satellite and terrestrial communications components to enable true *ubiquity* and reliability - anywhere in the United States and Canada."
"The device will, TerreStar says, "allow users to seamlessly and securely stay connected to TerreStar's satellite and terrestrial network"."
Oh come on. With that list of air interfaces the chances of their network keeping tabs on which bloody portion of the spectrum you're bleating in are close to zero! Roaming between ETSI 2G and 3G is still buggy - but include satellite in there as well?
Do me a favour! Wait for at least 2 software releases for the user devices. Mind you, the Americans adore motorola handsets, so I guess they'll put up with any old crap when it comes to software...
"We are creating a new paradigm in mobile broadband network services and devices that will leverage our integrated satellite and terrestrial communications components to enable true ubiquity and reliability - anywhere in the United States and Canada."
A buzzword bingo winner in one sentence. Pass me that bucket would you? I'm feeling rather ill.
"But what's an ESA satellite doing providing a service to the US and Canada for? Oh, right, the money." - It's not an ESA satellite; the satellite is privately owned by a US company. ESA (or, more properly, I suspect, ArianeSpace) is just the launch provider. The Ariane 5 is currently probably the most popular platform for very large commercial satellites to geosynchronous orbit, and if you look at the list of recent launches, apart from the ESA ones, most have been US and Asian-owned sats.
I'm surprised that there's enough of a market for satphones to make this particular one economical these days, though.
The satellite was built in America. ESA is now a major player in the heavy launch business which is why the owners used it.
Thirty one successful launches in a row. Three so far this year and four more planned.
It's about time Europe got into the manned space business. We've got an ideal launch vehicle and the ATV which has delivered supplies to the ISS.
It's not an ESA satellite. It's an ESA rocket, launching a privately owned satellite. There's nothing unusual about government space agencies (NASA, ESA, etc) being paid to launch satellites. And as a taxpayer, so long as the ESA make a profit on the launch, that's fine by me.
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