Can you imagine your life without Internet? Almost impossible to do so, isn’t it? Still, there are parts of the world where there is no Internet as of yet. They do manage to live and survive each day without tweeting about it. Nonetheless, we have seen a recent trend of companies promising to bring Internet connectivity to such places and one such company to join the race is Quarkson. The Portuguese company has claimed that it wants to make use of UAVs in order to provide Internet ‘to every corner of the world.’
The program has been named as SkyOrbiter and is somewhat planned along the same lines as the Google’s Project Loon. Quarkson will be making use of high-range UAVs to deliver Internet from orbit. The fleet will be made up of 6 unique low-altitude models and 3 high-altitude models. The basic SkyOrbiter is known as LA 25 and it has been designed for government and commercial use while sporting a wingspan of 82 ft. and operates at 11,500 ft. while exhibiting a range of 42,000 km (two weeks).
All the subsequent low altitude SkyOrbiters have an increased wingspan and range identical to LA75. LA 75 has a wingspan of 246 ft. and a range of over 150,000 km (seven weeks). Moving on to high altitude UAVs; they orbit at 22,000 meters and are capable of staying in orbit for years. The HA75 is the most advanced model with a wingspan of 246 ft. and a range of 5,000,000 km (5 years).
According to Quarkson, SkyOrbiters are capable of accommodating a multitude of weights and types of payloads based upon what kind of data has to be collected. They can be used for a myriad of purposes other than Internet access. These tasks include aerial imaging, military uses, security applications, monitoring pertaining to environment and agriculture.
Users will be able to manage their fleet of SkyOrbiters by making use of the Constellation Manager System. The HC-LOS ground antennas can be made use of to connect to the UAVs ia company’s Q-SATCOM bi-directional data link or the SkyLink wireless communication system.
As of now, fundraising is being carried along with some development to overcome some ‘challenges’. The Maiden Flight challenge will depict the SkyOrbiter LA25 fly for the first time. Flights around the world and pole-to-pole journeys will also be part of the challenges. Pretty cool, isn’t it?