GalaxySpace developing orbiting internet service

2023-11-24 13:33:44China Daily Editor : Li Yan ECNS App Download

The Lingxi 03 is a plate-shaped communication satellite. (Photo provided to China Daily)

GalaxySpace, a Beijing-based private satellite maker, is developing a new type of plate-shaped satellite that will allow operators to establish a direct link between their mobile phone and such spacecraft for better internet service.

The new-generation communications satellite, which has yet to be named, will look like a flat box on the ground. As soon as the craft is deployed in orbit, it will unfold its solar panels, which will also carry phased array antennas, according to Xu Ming, founder and chairman of GalaxySpace.

Xu said on Tuesday at a space industry forum in Chongqing that engineers have designed an advanced, unique technology to unfold solar panels in multiple directions, which will be crucial to the spacecraft.

They are now working on another important issue in the new satellite project — how to place both the solar power units and phased array antennas on the thin, foldable panels, he noted.

"Such satellites will feature large areas of solar power units and phased array antennas, which means they will have a very strong signal transmission capability. Once networked, the satellites will support broadband internet service through direct connection between users' mobile phones and the space-based system," he told the audience at the forum.

GalaxySpace built and launched in July a plate-shaped communications satellite called Lingxi 03, which is the country's first satellite equipped with a flexible solar array.

Lingxi 03 is equipped with a millimeter-wave multibeam digital payload with a transmission capacity of tens of gigabits per second. It is tasked with verifying a next-generation low-Earth-orbit broadband communication system and other satellite technologies including ultralarge energy systems and active thermal control, Galaxy-Space said.

The flexible solar wing on Lingxi 03 is extremely thin — each layer on it is only about one millimeter thick and when the wing is folded inside the rocket, its overall thickness is only five centimeters, its designers said.

In late October, the satellite conducted an important technology demonstration operation that established a direct link between two ground terminals.


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