Sunday, September 23, 2018

Rogue Satellites

Interesting story of how the CEO of Swarm Technologies launched "rogue satellites" - four small satellites called SpaceBees to be exact.  The twist is that the FCC had denied Swarm Technologies permission to launch these satellites but Swarm and their CEO Sara Spangelo did it anyway.

The questions and issues abound.

These SpaceBees are small communications satellites that would create a network allowing Internet connected devices back on Earth to communicate with each other. Among other problems these SpaceBees are too small (10 centimeters x 10 centimeters x 2.8 centimeters) to be tracked back on Earth by the FCC. Swarm argues that if they can track the devices then others including the FCC should be able to as well.

But it is not just the issue of space junk (roughly more than 4,700 defunct satellites and over 29,000 pieces of space debris) littering our orbit. These SpaceBees didn't have permission to be there. What else is up there without permission? Who should control granting permission? How can you disable rogue satellites once in place?

Sounds like we may be getting our Space Force in place just in time. And a Space Fence too!