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Amazon to launch two Project Kuiper satellites next fall

Amazon to launch two Project Kuiper satellites next fall
Blue Origin announced it will next year launch two prototypes satellites for its Project Kuiper Internet service aboard a United Launch Alliance Atlas V -- similar to the one pictured last month launching from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station -- in Fall 2022. File Photo by Joe Marino/UPI | License Photo

Nov. 1 (UPI) -- The first set of satellites Amazon plans to send to space along with Verizon will be launched next fall, according to an experimental launch license filed Monday.

The company plans to send up to 3,236 satellites as part of Project Kuiper, a satellite-internet service that will serve rural communities that lack terrestrial infrastructure.

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Two satellites -- called KuiperSat-1 and KuiperSat-2 -- are prototypes that will be launched by United Launch Alliance on rockets from ABL Space Systems. They will house and test the technology needed for the entire project, including antennas, modems, and power and propulsion.

The Federal Communications Commission gave Amazon a deadline to launch half of all its satellites by 2026.

Project Kuiper is the second pursuit in space for Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, who also owns Blue Origin, which last week announced plans with Sierra Nevada Corp. for a private space station called Orbital Reef.

The venture will rival Starlink, SpaceX owner Elon Musk's satellite-based broadband service, and others aiming to provide high-speed Internet to customers from low Earth orbit.

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