Over the last few years, the space industry has dramatically transformed how it does business. New players are capitalizing on new markets with ambitious projects to take advantage of the tremendous business opportunities. Commercial space satellite launches into orbit have rapidly increased, with costs shrinking several folds. Moore’s law has taken hold with cheaper launch vehicles and smaller satellites by several magnitudes. Today’s simpler motor-bike-sized satellites are lighter and far more affordable to build and launch than their ultra-complex, bus-sized predecessors.
Advances in design, manufacturing, and standardization, along with shorter times to market, have had the greatest effect on the commercial space satellite industry, enabling faster and more flexible deployment. Private NewSpace entrepreneurs such as SpaceX, OneWeb, Telesat, and Amazon plan to launch mega-constellations of thousands of low Earth orbit (LEO) satellites over the next decade, providing a global network of connectivity, including underserved areas of the world.