5 Mar 2018 12:19

Russia in talks with OneWeb, expects overture from SpaceX - minister

NOVOSIBIRSK. March 5 (Interfax) - OneWeb is holding negotiations with the Russian authorities to use frequencies over Russia, Communications Minister Nikolai Nikiforov said on Monday at a meeting with students in Novosibirsk.

"SpaceX has never approached Russia's communications administration with a request to provide or discuss the issue of using any frequencies [...] With OneWeb, such cooperation is underway. It is very difficult, but it's underway. We're waiting for an overture from SpaceX," Nikiforov said.

He also said that the first Soyuz rocket with a OneWeb satellite will be launched in August 2018.

"The problem is not that someone agreed or refused. The issue is that when a satellite flies over the planet, it uses certain frequencies. Flying over various countries, it uses various sets of frequencies, and a satellite operator needs to reach an agreement with each of these countries so that the use of these frequencies does not create interference," Nikiforov said.

He said the technology proposed by OneWeb and SpaceX has not been applied yet.

"Humanity has never before been in such a network of hundreds of satellites in low orbit. We still have to find out how this will work. We're considering various options for cooperation, for now with OneWeb, there are no negotiations with SpaceX," Nikiforov said.