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Satnews Daily
June 25th, 2017

FCC Approves OneWeb Frequency Access Request

The plan by OneWeb is to provide download speeds up to 200 Mbps and uplink speeds of 50 Mbps at inexpensive pricing to provide Internet connectivity to one billion users across the globe, with one of the initial missions of the company's first on orbit satellites to address the digital divide in the U.S.

However, before such can be implemented, major steps have to be handled... the satellites have to be launched (yet to come to fruition) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) had to approve the firm's request for access to the 20/30 GHz (Ka-band) and 11/14 GHz (Ku-band) frequencies for the upcoming, 720 LEO satellites.

Congratulations to OneWeb, as the FCC has now approved the company's frequency request.

This action paves the way for OneWeb to provide broadband services using satellite technology to expand Internet access in remote and rural areas across the country and is the first of its kind for a new generation of large, non-geostationary-satellite orbit (NGSO), fixed-satellite service (FSS) systems. OneWeb proposes to access the U.S. market for its global network and the satellite system will be authorized by the United Kingdom.

The FCC had to approve OneWeb operations to make certain the satellite constellation does not cause interference to other
users of the same spectrum and that the network will operate in a way that manages the risk of collisions. The Order and Declaratory Ruling adopted by the FCC outlines the conditions under which OneWeb will be permitted to provide service using its proposed NGSO FSS satellite constellation in the United States.  As such, this FCC action provides a blueprint for the Earth station licenses that OneWeb, or its partners, will need to obtain before providing OneWeb's proposed service in the
United States.  

OneWeb was the first of several entities to file a request seeking FCC authority to deploy a large constellation of NGSO FSS satellites to provide ubiquitous broadband services.  The FCC is currently examining additional applications for the operation of NGSO FSS constellations, most of which include large numbers of satellites.  With this action, the Commission facilitates
greater broadband offerings and competition in the United States.  

This Action was undertaken by the Commission on June 22, 2017, by Order and Declaratory Ruling (FCC 17-77). Chairman Pai and Commissioners Clyburn and OíRielly approved and issued separate statements.