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Personal Micro-Satellites will soon be a huge market

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posted on Dec, 1 2019 @ 08:35 PM
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I was thinking today about the SpaceX Falcon 9 payload pricing cost. $62M for 22,800 kg to LEO.
spacenews.com...

I had been checking out the CubeSat specifications.
en.wikipedia.org...

This got me thinking about the SpaceX Starlink, this constellation was originally going to be nearly 12,000 low-cost satellites providing a terabit internet service.



If these can offer communications to the ground for subscribers at a reasonable cost perhaps SpaceX would hook up a private satellite network to ground as well. In this way, a constellation of up to 22,800 personal satellites could be launched and controlled by the ground via a Starlink connected ground control system. These personal satellites could have some autonomous behavior and provide a 2-year personal satellite space service to consumers.

Imagine if you had your own satellite under your control for a cost of lets say $10,000 or $417 per month for 24 months The company would have gross revenue of $228,000,000 per launch. Subtracting from this $10,000 unit cost the $2,719 per unit for launch costs, then subtract about the cost for a high-end smartphone $1,000. Then subtract the design cost per basic package of about $1,000 each, and you are up to $5,281 on the cost side per unit. From there everything is an upgrade. This locks in a minimum net cost for a launch of 22,800 personal satellites of $5,281 per unit or $120,406,800 for the entire first payload.

That provides the company that can pull this off a gross profit of $107,593,200. If the company does some efficient engineering and the cost of sales is reduced by some viral campaigns and crowdfunding the company could have a remaining $100M in net profits for one launch.

I might be wrong on some of these assumptions but I think they are in the ballpark. These PS-units would provide high-resolution imaging, data storage, and transfer services to the PS vehicles, high-speed data, and some room for added sensors in the various spectrum. If you think people spend so much time on their phones now imagine if they can access their own PS over multiple devices.



Who would be interested? Schools, computer and space geeks, clubs like Ham clubs and various space and engineering clubs. I imagine the basic unit having lots of interesting stuff on it like 8K cameras, telephoto lenses, all sorts of RF listening bandwidth, likely lots of apps would find a market. If one launch per year could be sold and made $100M profit at its base profit margin imaging the value added by all of these private operators building on the 1-kilo platform and developing apps and sensor packages for them. It could be a huge industry all by itself in the end.

The 2-year life means constant upgrades and these satellites will de-orbit themselves making the need for them always stay at a certain service level ensuring a profitable market. SpaceX I think would be all in as it would show off some of the high technology solutions they can provide with a single Falcon 9 launch to LEO.



Of course, if it is very successful selling out the first payload the company could upgrade to the Falcon 9 heavy with a per kilo cost of only $1,655 each for 54,400 PS units and using the same assumptions that would raise the net profits per launch up to $345,168,000 net for the launch.

edit on 12/1/2019 by machineintelligence because: added content




posted on Dec, 1 2019 @ 08:51 PM
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a reply to: machineintelligence

Cool I, want one.

You can watch porn on it right?



posted on Dec, 1 2019 @ 08:52 PM
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a reply to: machineintelligence

Interesting.

Now if it can provide a consistently strong cell or wifi signal that would peek my interest. Though I'm not sure how feasible that would be.

But I think you're selling short on just giving them a 2 yr service life. If they are able to stand up to the rigors of low orbit. There will likely be a strong market for used personal satellites at a lower cost.



posted on Dec, 1 2019 @ 08:57 PM
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a reply to: LookingAtMars

It would be akin to having your own 8 core processor with about half a TB of data storage in orbit accessible to only you. Also, it would be your own Earth-imaging satellite that you have real-time access to as well. You can imagine having a high tech scanner listening to a broad swath of RF spectrum, EM field sensors, magnetic field sensors, thermal imaging, some autonomy for positioning with a Xenon based ion micro-thruster system.
edit on 12/1/2019 by machineintelligence because: entry error



posted on Dec, 1 2019 @ 09:00 PM
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At LEO a satellite is only over a spot on Earth in its orbital path for a matter of minutes.

Perhaps, it would be better to refer to your plan as a way to provide access to a Personalized Satellite Network?



posted on Dec, 1 2019 @ 09:03 PM
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a reply to: watchitburn
In LEO orbit a PS would be doing well to have 2 years of autonomous navigation. Perhaps 3 years if you are careful with your xenon propellant. The de-orbit command would be based on the micro-satellite having the built-in de-orbit ability and enough propellant to perform that final maneuver.



posted on Dec, 1 2019 @ 09:05 PM
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a reply to: Bhadhidar

I imagine piggybacking off of the Starlink system for networking and shared resources via a mesh network of PS units.



posted on Dec, 1 2019 @ 09:51 PM
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a reply to: machineintelligence

Whaaaaa ?

Are you telling me that everybody here, doesn't already have their own personal satellite ?




posted on Dec, 1 2019 @ 10:34 PM
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a reply to: Nothin

Not everyone can afford a personal micro-satellite of their own even at $10K but you can bet if this happens people will develop a market renting time on their satellite like a timeshare. Say for instance you want to schedule a unit that will be over an area of your scanning or imaging interest for 20 minutes and the operator of the satellite charges $10 per minute for direct and discrete access to the satellite, that is a cost of only $200 for a 20 minute real-time window on that area above the Earth. Like I mentioned before lots of side industries will spring up once this system is launched. If a personal micro-satellite owner can manage enough app access and or control of the satellite in a timeshare arrangement they can make a nice profit from their $10K investment.



posted on Dec, 1 2019 @ 10:47 PM
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originally posted by: machineintelligence
a reply to: LookingAtMars

It would be akin to having your own 8 core processor with about half a TB of data storage in orbit accessible to only you. Also, it would be your own Earth-imaging satellite that you have real-time access to as well. You can imagine having a high tech scanner listening to a broad swath of RF spectrum, EM field sensors, magnetic field sensors, thermal imaging, some autonomy for positioning with a Xenon based ion micro-thruster system.


Not to be too negative but...
Almost as good as my note10+ specs, minus the ion thrusters and space problems.
Not very realistic.
What's the advantage? Real-time satellite imaging won't be allowed for security reasons.




posted on Dec, 1 2019 @ 10:57 PM
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a reply to: Mandroid7



Real-time satellite imaging won't be allowed for security reasons.

Under what rules are you talking about it will not be allowed? I know of no international body that can police such a thing. Not everything under the Sun is following the same rules thank God.



posted on Dec, 2 2019 @ 12:52 AM
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originally posted by: Mandroid7

originally posted by: machineintelligence
a reply to: LookingAtMars

It would be akin to having your own 8 core processor with about half a TB of data storage in orbit accessible to only you. Also, it would be your own Earth-imaging satellite that you have real-time access to as well. You can imagine having a high tech scanner listening to a broad swath of RF spectrum, EM field sensors, magnetic field sensors, thermal imaging, some autonomy for positioning with a Xenon based ion micro-thruster system.


Not to be too negative but...
Almost as good as my note10+ specs, minus the ion thrusters and space problems.
Not very realistic.
What's the advantage? Real-time satellite imaging won't be allowed for security reasons.



I am gravitated to the negative side as well. We get incredible, clear content from what is up there that specializes in what they deliver.

Personal sats would have to have navigational support and also to avoid collisions. They would require FCC related licensing, orbital restrictions, censorship of non-recordable places...

Just too much for such a little return on investment, right now.
edit on 2-12-2019 by charlyv because: c



posted on Dec, 2 2019 @ 01:09 AM
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a reply to: charlyv


Just too much for such a little return on investment, right now.


Right now is a very fast-moving target. I think we can agree on that.



posted on Dec, 2 2019 @ 02:03 AM
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If you agree or think this idea is without merit I like posting such ideas here on ATS. For one reason there are intelligent and well-educated people here who are good to bounce ideas off of. The second reason is that this site is cataloged by the various search engines very quickly. Nearly instantly the idea is entered into the zeitgeist.



duckduckgo.com...

What you will notice in the link below is that I am just picking up on what is possible. The 3rd link is stating $8,000 personal satellites. I think that the number is on the low side. I am thinking $10K would be more interesting and profitable to the point it is doable. Of course the Atlas link is in 2012 numbers. I think my concept is closer to doable.



posted on Dec, 2 2019 @ 06:39 AM
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a reply to: machineintelligence

If this happens I think it would need to be highly regulated-not just anyone should be allowed to rent a sattelite.
Imagine how a personal sattelite could be used by criminals.
Human traffickers,drug smugglers,bank robbers-they are just a few I can think of who would be able to use real time satellite surveilance to stay one step ahead of the law.




posted on Dec, 2 2019 @ 06:41 AM
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On one hand it would be cool to have a personal satellite.

On the other, 'Great more junk in space'.




posted on Dec, 2 2019 @ 06:43 AM
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Who would be interested?


Criminals,drug cartels,terrorists,pedophiles, and spies.


edit on 2-12-2019 by neo96 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 2 2019 @ 08:14 AM
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originally posted by: neo96


Who would be interested?


Criminals,drug cartels,terrorists,pedophiles, and spies.



So you're saying it would have the backing of politicians...hmmm...



posted on Dec, 2 2019 @ 08:19 AM
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a reply to: dogstar23

Prolly.

Then they get to expand the FISA, and Patriot Acts.

Cause Low earth orbit technically isn't Us soil.


edit on 2-12-2019 by neo96 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 2 2019 @ 08:23 AM
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a reply to: neo96


'Great more junk in space'

Exactly what I was thinking. I can only imagine what several generations down the road will look back and think. "It wasn't enough that our ancestors turned the planet into a landfill, they had to junk up the space around the planet too."



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