Launching from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, the SpaceX Falcon 9 is on schedule to deliver the first 10 Iridium NEXT satellites into low-earth orbit.
Iridium is hosting specially designed Aireon receivers on each satellite, covering 100 per cent of the globe to offer global air traffic surveillance.
The orbital configuration of the low-latency, cross-linked Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellites provides complete global coverage, including oceanic and polar regions, without the need for ground stations. The LEO altitude allows the aircraft signals to be received in space without any additional equipment or changes to aircraft avionics.
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