Bharti-backed OneWeb, the Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite communications company, on Friday, confirmed the successful deployment and contact of 40 satellites launched by SpaceX from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida (US).

OneWeb’s satellites separated successfully from the rocket and were dispensed using three separation groups over a period of 40 minutes, with the last separation occurring 1 hour and 35 minutes after launch. Signal acquisition on all 40 satellites has been confirmed, the company said in a statement.

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The launch enables OneWeb to continue expanding its connectivity capabilities as it grows its fleet of satellites and seeks to initiate services for more partners around the world.

“OneWeb already has connectivity solutions active today in key geographies across the globe and is bringing new areas online by partnering with leading providers, including VEON, Orange, Galaxy Broadband, Paratus, Telespazio, and more. OneWeb and its partners are relentlessly focused on the mission to bridge the digital divide and provide internet connectivity to a greater number of unconnected and underserved rural and remote communities and businesses,” it said.

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This launch is OneWeb’s 17th to date and the penultimate mission as the company is set to complete its first-generation (Gen 1) LEO satellite constellation and enable global coverage in 2023. With 582 satellites now in orbit, OneWeb will complete the global footprint of its Gen 1 constellation with a launch set to take place later this month with ISRO/NSIL, it said.

“Now more than ever, OneWeb is dedicated to continuing the momentum we have garnered from the past 17 successful launches, to innovate alongside our trusted partners, and deliver connectivity solutions at scale. Each launch is a group effort, and today’s success would not have been possible without the dedication of the entire launch team and our partners here in Florida,” Neil Masterson, CEO, OneWeb.