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Satellite Constellation Competition Grows as LeoSat Teams with Thales Alenia Space

By Doug Messier
Parabolic Arc
March 18, 2015
Filed under

LeoSat_logoAnother satellite Internet start-up has popped up this month:

Satellite Internet startup LeoSat has contracted with manufacturer Thales Alenia Space of France and Italy to conduct a one-year cost study of the company’s planned low Earth orbiting (LEO) constellation of high-throughput broadband satellites.

LeoSat, a company founded by former Schlumberger executives Cliff Anders and Phil Marlar, aims to orbit a constellation of small, high-throughput Ka-band spacecraft that will deliver Internet services globally. The network initially would comprise 80 satellites aimed at fixed and maritime markets by 2019, and ultimately grow to around 120 satellites to offer mobile service.

Led by Vern Fotheringham, who recently left the top post at flat-panel antenna startup Kymeta Corp., LeoSat is developing an architecture that will use autonomous routing over a fully meshed network designed to offer secure, point-to-point communications around the globe without touching the ground.

Fotheringham says while other satellite-Internet constellations aim to deliver broadband to the masses, LeoSat’s primary focus will be delivering “ industrial-grade communications to major organizations,” both commercial and government.

Read the full story.

Leosat Announces the Appointment of Vern Fotheringham as Chief Executive Officer

Announces Vision for Low Earth Orbit Satellite Constellation for Business and Government Markets

Leosat, LLC, a company developing a low earth orbit (LEO) satellite constellation to provide worldwide coverage that sets new standards in satellite performance, today announced the appointment of Vern Fotheringham as Chief Executive Officer and outlined the company’s vision publicly for the first time since beginning its development in 2013.

Founded by former Schlumberger executives Cliff Anders and Phil Marlar, Leosat has been developing its network architecture, spectrum planning, and satellite payload since 2013. This work has been done in conjunction with several leading global aerospace engineering contractors and satellite equipment manufacturers and has created a solid foundation upon which to build the company’s global operations and market reach. The company’s vision is to deliver cost-effective, extremely high-speed, low-latency, highly secured data network service offerings to address the unmet needs of business and government markets.

“This is an exciting time in the satellite industry, with technology driving increased demand, costs coming down and several notable players such as Google, SpaceX and OneWeb helping to fuel the category,” said Christopher Baugh, president and founder of NSR, a satellite industry consulting company. “Leosat is positioning its service offerings primarily on potentially lucrative business and government market opportunities. There is a big international market to be served by a unified global broadband network with significant revenue potential at stake.”

“Given the strategic objectives associated with Leosat’s next stage of development, it was important to bring in an industry leader with a proven track record of innovation and corporate development,” stated Cliff Anders, co-founder of Leosat. “When we became aware that Vern was available, we knew we had found the right satellite industry pioneer to help us build Leosat into a world-class organization and operating company.”

Fotheringham, who most recently was Chairman and CEO of Kymeta Corporation, has more than 30 years of experience in the broadband wireless and satellite communications industry. He has created and built numerous successful ventures and contributed to many large-scale projects for major service providers, system vendors and software solution suppliers. He has also been a public policy and regulatory advocate for new telecommunications service rules and standards, and an inventor and creator of now globally adopted standards, and innovative new products, and services. In his role with Leosat, Fotheringham will be introducing the company to the global satellite industry, the international financial community and the customer market for a range of new innovative services.

“When I was approached about joining Leosat, it represented a perfect opportunity to meld my personal interest and experience in advancing the future of Non-Geo-Synchronous Orbit (NGSO) broadband satellite systems with an organization that shares my vision and enjoys a significant head start over the rapidly growing field of new entrants seeking to exploit the unique capabilities of NGSO satellite communications,” explained Fotheringham. “We are positioning Leosat on new solutions primarily addressing business and government market opportunities. We will be announcing some very significant strategic global alignments and service delivery partnerships over the coming months.”

Leosat and its leadership team will be attending SATELLITE 2015 March 16 – 19 in Washington, D.C. To schedule a meeting at the show, please contact [email protected].

About Leosat, LLC – Leosat, LLC is leveraging the latest developments in satellite communication technologies for both its satellite constellation and its mobile, fixed and portable ground segment equipment and services. The company is relocating its headquarters to the Washington, D.C., area, and will operate on a worldwide basis with regional partners and distributors. For more information please visit

2 responses to “Satellite Constellation Competition Grows as LeoSat Teams with Thales Alenia Space”

  1. windbourne says:

    Finally, loads of competition.
    If multiple companies jump onboard with SATs/internet, most will die.
    But, in the mean time, they will help create a massive demand for launch and SATs.
    That combined with a race to put up multiple private stations, and a lunar base, will help to drive prices way down.
    In doing that, it should make it possible for space agencies to take advantage and push for more robotic missions, combined with jumping on private manned missions.

  2. arun kumar says:

    Here are some simulation videos of such a constellation of satellites [OneWeb]:

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