AT&T FirstNet Report

FirstNet has kept first responders connected through hurricanes Florence and Michael, and more

More than 3,600 public safety agencies across the country have now joined FirstNet. That’s a nearly 50 percent increase in the number of agencies subscribing to the nationwide wireless communications ecosystem in less than 2 months.

That accounts for more than 250,000 connections on FirstNet. And first responders from federal, state, local and tribal public safety agencies are continuing to turn to FirstNet for the communications tools they need – especially during emergencies and large events.

Read more HERE.

 

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SpaceX Changes Its Starlink Internet Satellite Plans to Minimize Space Junk

starlink_graphicSpaceX has amended its plan to built out an array of internet-providing, Starlink satellites. Most recently, the company requested that a portion of its constellation of spacecraft be placed at a lower altitude to avoid creating any unnecessary space junk.

That’s according to a new application filed with the Federal Communications Commission on November 9, which requested that 1,584 of its satellites be placed 550 kilometers above the Earth’s surface instead of the originally planned 1,150 km. SpaceX maintains that this would reduce the risk of adding to the already thousands of tons of floating space debris orbiting the planet.

“This modest modification to the SpaceX Authorization will slightly reduce the total number of spacecraft in the constellation, meet all required protection criteria for other systems operating in the same frequencies, and cause no overall increase in radio frequency interference,” stated the document.

Read more HERE.

ALSO: FCC BLASTS OFF — Brace yourself for space puns, FCC-watchers. The commission votes today on a slew of space-related items, including orders aimed at granting satellite companies access to the U.S. market to offer broadband services. Another order will authorize SpaceX to use more spectrum for its broadband satellite constellation. And the FCC will consider a rulemaking to update its regulations of “space debris.”

Source: POLITICO Morning Tech

Valley Vision Broadband News

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Broadband Space News

SpaceX wants to lower the bar for its first batch of Starlink broadband satellites, with the aim of beginning deployment by the end of 2019.

The revised plan is laid out for regulators at the Federal Communications Commission in filings that seek a lower orbit for 1,584 of the more than 4,400 satellites it envisions launching. The new target orbit would be 550 kilometers (342 miles) in altitude, as opposed to the 1,150-kilometer (715-mile) orbit described in SpaceX’s initial round of filings.

The FCC signed off on SpaceX’s original plan in March, and would have to approve the revisions after putting them through a public comment period.

In its filings, SpaceX said it was changing the plan based on its experience with Tintin A and B, the two prototype satellites it put into orbit in February.

Full Article is HERE.

“SpaceX intends to launch its first batch of satellites to begin populating a new orbital shell before the end of 2019,” it said. At least half of the 4,400-plus satellites are required to be in operation by March 29, 2024.

 

Having the satellite in low Earth orbit as opposed to a much higher geostationary orbit reduces the lag time, or latency, for data transmissions. In May, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said the response time for the Tintin satellites was “pretty good,” with latency amounting to 25 milliseconds. “Good enough to play fast-response video games,” he tweeted.

When the low-orbit constellation is fully deployed, latency could be reduced to as little as 15 milliseconds, “at which point it would be virtually unnoticeable to almost all users,” SpaceX said in today’s filing.

 

Public Knowledge on Rural Broadband

For too many Americans, communications tools are either not accessible, not affordable, or both. After years of emphasis and bipartisan rhetoric around the need to serve all Americans with high-speed broadband, 31 percent of rural Americans continue to lack access. Many Americans in urban areas are also underserved by their local broadband providers. A lack of access to high-speed broadband means lost economic, employment, health, and educational opportunities for Americans in these unserved and underserved communities, and an increasing divide between those who are thriving in the current economy and those who are not. Congress must act and listen to new ideas and voices beyond industry lobbyists to make the benefits of broadband access a reality for all.

Link to Public Knowledge HERE.

What 2018 Midterm Election Means for Rural Broadband

According to POLITICO Morning Tech:

A Democratic House and Republican Senate have a bipartisan shot at legislating on tech issues, but it’s a limited one. The two chambers “show signs that they could align around two issues: imposing privacy rules on the country’s tech giants and directing new funds to improve internet service in rural parts of the country,” John reports . “But with a tight window for legislating and the 2020 presidential election looming, the political climate doesn’t favor robust cooperation, making any breakthroughs challenging.”

Strong Rural Broadband Advocate:

Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R), who chairs the House Energy and Commerce tech subcommittee defeated Democrat Phil Bredesen in the election to fill the Senate seat being vacated by Republican Bob Corker. Blackburn has been a strong advocate for rural broadband and it should help to have a strong voice in the Senate.