SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Planet Labs PBC (NYSE: PL), a leading provider of daily data and insights about Earth, today announced that it has been selected by two companies, SES Government Solutions and Telesat Government Solutions, to demonstrate real-time space-to-space connectivity solutions from LEO satellites to other in-space communication satellites operated by SES and Telesat for NASA’s Communication Services Project, or “CSP”.
With NASA’s plans to decommission its owned and operated satellites which are a part of the Tracking and Data Relay Satellite System (TDRSS) in the coming years, the agency will evaluate the feasibility of commercial networks to reliably support future near-Earth missions. As part of Planet’s involvement in CSP, Planet will accelerate its R&D for near-Earth space communication capabilities on its future earth-observation satellites. Planet will work to demonstrate its state-of-the art communication technology stack involving real-time satellite connectivity for NASA’s CSP, with the goal of further building its relationship with the agency and enabling low latency solutions for Planet customers.
“We are really proud to support NASA’s mission to shape and accelerate next generation near earth in-space communication capabilities being developed in partnership with the private sector,” said Planet Co-Founder and CSO, Robbie Schingler. “We’re proud to work with SES and Telesat Government Solutions to align our respective technology investments and business operations to create ultra-low-latency communication capabilities. Such capabilities could be leveraged by NASA and other government and commercial space actors, including Planet’s future satellite constellations, and we believe will create differentiating products and increase time-to-value for our Earth Data platform customers.”
With SES Government Solutions, Planet will work to develop and demonstrate a ubiquitous, always-on low-latency connectivity solution enabled by SES’s multi-orbit fleet of geostationary (GEO) and medium earth orbit (MEO) satellite constellations including on-demand intersatellite-link connectivity via the O3b mPower satellite communications system.
With Telesat Government Solutions, Planet will work to build space-based RF terminals that will be hosted on two Earth observation spacecraft. Once in orbit, Telesat Government Solutions will demonstrate Ka-band, high throughput transmission from the space-based RF terminals to Telesat operated satellites flying at a higher altitude, as well as mesh, space relay connectivity between the optically linked Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellites before downlinking data to representative NASA operation centers.
Following Planet’s agile aerospace philosophy, Planet looks to demonstrate various aspects of this technology via ground and on-orbit tests with the Pelican satellites that Planet intends to launch starting in the calendar year 2023. These missions may enable Planet to bring next-generation technologies into operation faster and at a lower cost than would be possible otherwise. Planet expects that intersatellite link capabilities will enable Planet to leap forward in speed of delivery to commercial customers – going from data delivery timelines on order of hours from existing constellations down to minutes with future systems – bringing value to users across a range of applications from disaster response to national security.
Planet has a close and productive relationship with NASA, providing access to PlanetScope imagery for scientific research use for all U.S. Federal Civilian researchers and National Science Foundation funded researchers.
About Planet Labs PBC
Planet is a leading provider of global, daily satellite imagery and geospatial solutions. Planet is driven by a mission to image the world every day, and make change visible, accessible and actionable. Founded in 2010 by three NASA scientists, Planet designs, builds, and operates the largest Earth observation fleet of imaging satellites, capturing over 30 TB of data per day. Planet provides mission-critical data, advanced insights, and software solutions to over 800 customers, comprising the world’s leading agriculture, forestry, intelligence, education and finance companies and government agencies, enabling users to simply and effectively derive unique value from satellite imagery. Planet is a public benefit corporation trading on the New York Stock Exchange as PL. To learn more visit www.planet.com and follow us on Twitter.
Except for the historical information contained herein, the matters set forth in this press release are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the "safe harbor" provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including, but not limited to, Planet’s ability to capture market opportunity and realize any of the potential benefits from current or future contract awards, product enhancements, new products, or strategic partnerships and customer collaborations and Planet’s ability to successfully design, build, launch and deploy, operate and market new products and satellites and the Company’s ability to realize any of the potential benefits from product and satellite launches, either as designed, within the expected time frame, in a cost-effective manner, or at all. Forward-looking statements are based on Planet’s management’s beliefs, as well as assumptions made by, and information currently available to them. Because such statements are based on expectations as to future events and results and are not statements of fact, actual results may differ materially from those projected. Factors which may cause actual results to differ materially from current expectations include, but are not limited to: Planet’s ability to obtain and maintain required licenses and approvals from regulatory agencies, such as the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), in a timely fashion, or at all; whether Planet will be able to successfully design, build, launch and deploy or operate its satellites, including new satellites either as designed, in a timely fashion or at all; Planet’s ability to develop and release product and service enhancements to respond to rapid technological change, or to develop new designs and technologies for its satellites (including integrations with other third party satellite technology and operations), in a timely and cost-effective manner; whether Planet will be able to continue to invest in scaling its sales organization, expanding its software engineering (including its ability to integrate new satellite capabilities) and marketing capabilities; whether Planet will be able to accurately predict and capture market opportunity; Planet’s ability to invest in sales, marketing and software solutions to drive expansion within its existing customer base and further penetrate verticals; Planet’s ability to obtain or maintain regulatory approvals and/or adhere to regulatory requirements, including those related to Planet’s ability to operate as a subcontractor with the required security clearances; changes in government policies regarding use of commercial data or satellite operators, material delay or cancellation of government programs, government spending authorizations and budgetary priorities (including incremental funding); changes in general global economic conditions, Planet’s operations (including the design, building, launch, deployment and operation of satellites) or the technology and/or integration operations of Planet’s strategic partners that may alter or delay Planet’s ability to perform under current or future contracts; the cancellation or non-performance of contracts by strategic partners ; and the risk factors and other disclosures about Planet and its business included in Planet’s periodic reports, proxy statements, and other disclosure materials filed from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) which are available online at www.sec.gov, and on Planet’s website at www.planet.com. All forward-looking statements reflect Planet’s beliefs and assumptions only as of the date such statements are made. Planet undertakes no obligation to update forward-looking statements to reflect future events or circumstances.