Swarm Satellites Has Smallest Satellites and Will Have Low Data Rate Global Coverage

Swarm Technologies makes the smallest satellite at one-quarter the size of a 1U cubesat. They raised $25 million in a series A. The round was led by Craft Ventures and Sky Dayton, founder of EarthLink and Boingo, with participation from Social Capital, 4DX Ventures and NJF Capital.

Swarm Technology CEO Sara Spangelo was at Monte Jade 29th Annual Summit. Nextbigfuture gave a talk at that event. Swarm Technology was a panel which discussed New Space.

The panel had as a Moderator: Celestine Schnugg, Founder, Boom Capital

Dr. Sara Spangelo, Co-founder and CEO, Swarm Technologies
Chris Kemp, Founder Stealth Startup / Former CTO NASA
Johan Mathé, Co-founder, Frog Labs AI
Mike Safyan, VP Launch, Planet

Swarm’s 1/4U satellites have a radar signature as bright as that of conventional CubeSats. This is due to a state-of-the-art radar retro-reflector technology onboard their satellites. Their satellites have internet data speeds for text messages and cost a few hundred thousand dollars each. Each of the Swarm satellites weighs about 300 grams or two-thirds of a pound. They are the size of sandwich (10 cm X 10 cm X 2.8 cm).

They seven Swarm satellites in LEO. Swarm Technologies will deploy a constellation of 150 satellites over the next 14 months. The FCC did not give Sarm the license for their first launch and a $900,000 penalty was paid.

Customers will use the internet from the Swarm satellites for:

Diagnostics and emergency messages from connected vehicles
Agriculture sensors in farmlands outside of cellular range
Shipping containers and asset tracking across oceans
Water monitoring devices in remote African communities
Smart meter reporting in remote locations
Connecting people through text messaging in rural and remote areas

4 thoughts on “Swarm Satellites Has Smallest Satellites and Will Have Low Data Rate Global Coverage”

  1. how is this appealing with the likes of one web and starlink on the horizon? doesnt seem like much for them to offer other than a pennies on the dollar purchase by one of the aformentioned

  2. > a few hundred thousand dollars each

    Quite expensive for 300 grams of electronics, even assuming a lot of radhard chips. And such projects generally avoid radhard chips due to high cost and difficulties with availability. With launch cost at about USD 50k for 1U cubesat, there is no way this thing can reach USD 100k cost, unless the project is deeply flawed, i.e. lots of mistakes, rework and other kinds of mess.

  3. Incorrect. Many make smaller satellites. PocketQube especially, who have a smaller form factor.

    And many are working on “chipsats” even smaller than cubesats – pretty much throwing out PCBs into space.

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