A steady expansion of tourism, resource exploration, shipping, and scientific research within the Arctic and on Antarctica has increased the demand for reliable and affordable polar connectivity. Since fiber cables and cell towers are not an option, and GEO satellites fall behind in terms of service quality, availability, and competitive pricing, LEO nanosatellites might seem the best alternative to connect the Earth’s poles.
Kepler has been awarded the 5th In-Orbit Demonstration Mission (IOD 5) by the Satellite Applications Catapult, a UK space innovation company, to begin delivering narrowband connectivity to billions of Internet of Things (IoT) products next year - a need that still remains unsatisfied by terrestrial networks and existing satellite solutions. The partnership with the Catapult will allow Kepler to deliver our final prototype satellite before we begin launching our constellation of upwards of 140 Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellites. TARS, our third satellite, will demonstrate the capacity and performance required to deliver narrowband services globally, while augmenting the high-capacity store-and-forward capabilities provided by our first satellites KIPP and CASE.