UK Government fronts up £500 million as part of bid for OneWeb

by | Jun 29, 2020 | Military space, Satellites, Seradata News, Technology

The UK Government is reportedly providing £500 million as part of one of the bids for the partially completed OneWeb low Earth orbit (LEO) communications satellite constellation, which is in Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. With a UK version of the EU’s Galileo navigation system – which the UK has been frozen out of – deemed unaffordable (at circa £5 billion), the idea is that navigation payloads could be added to the spacecraft to offer the equivalent of a GPS/Galileo navsat service from LEO.

Arianespace released this image showing how the OneWeb satellites will be carried. Courtesy: Arianespace

There is known to be a certain “redundancy” attraction to NATO allies in having access to a military/civil navigation low Earth orbit satellite service with a different type of architecture to that of the EU’s Galileo and USA’s GPS, both of which are located in Medium Earth Orbit (MEO). Nevertheless, there are some serious questions over the technology readiness for the proposed OneWeb navigation payload.

So far 74 OneWeb satellites have been launched out of a total of 650 for the complete constellation.  The maiden flight of Ariane 6 was supposed to be used for a OneWeb launch which now on hold following the Chapter 11 announcement.

About Seradata

Seradata produce the renowned SpaceTrak Launch & Satellite Database. Trusted by 100 of the world’s leading Space organisations, SpaceTrak is a fully queryable database used for market analysis, failure/risk assessment, spectrum analysis and space situational awareness (SSA).

For more information go to

Related Articles

Bharti Global to increase OneWeb investment by US$500 million, completing financing for constellation

Bharti Global, based in India, intends to increase its investment in LEO constellation operator OneWeb by a further US$500 million, Read more

November sale of OneWeb to British/Indian interest? Now approved by bankruptcy court and US agencies

The Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York announced its approval of the joint British/Indian takeover bid of Read more

UK Government accused of using mailshot to bias EU referendum towards staying in but Lloyds of London and UK scientists don’t need convincing

The Government of the United Kingdom, led by its Prime Minister David Cameron, came under furious criticism from the "Brexit" side for its planned mailshot attempt to convince Read more

Analysis: Putin orders Russian tanks to roll into Ukraine…and spaceflight will be affected (Updated/Corrected)

On 21 February, Russia’s President Putin ordered troops and tanks into disputed territories of Donetsk and Luhansk for “peacekeeping”, which Read more

Second OneWeb mission from Kourou launches more satellites to orbit

Arianespace successfully launched a Soyuz 2-ST-B/Fregat M vehicle from the Sinnamary launch site near Kourou in French Guiana at 1809 Read more

Another 36 OneWeb satellites are launched into orbit by a Soyuz 2.1b/Fregat

Russia successfully launched a Soyuz 2.1B/Fregat vehicle from the Baikonur Cosmodrome, near Tyuratam in Kazakhstan, at 1310 GMT on 27 Read more

OneWeb crosses constellation halfway mark with another launch

LEO constellation contender OneWeb passed the satellite deployment, halfway mark with another 36-unit launch from Vostochny Cosmodrome, Russia. The mission Read more

Eutelsat invests an additional US$165 million in OneWeb to increase its shareholding

Doubling-down on its investment in LEO-constellation contender OneWeb, Eutelsat has agreed to contribute an additional US$165 million. This transaction will Read more