AWS Launches Ground station and Lockheed Martin launches Verge

Pun completely intended, AWS clearly has its mind on moving to new spaces, in this case, actual space.

Today at Re:Invent, AWS launched two new offerings:

Andy Jassy the CEO of AWS launching AWS Ground Station

Amazon has announced AWS Ground Station, a managed co-located to 12 of the AWS regions.

Many of you may not actually realize that there is a massive cost to communicating with satellites. Until this announcement, it took a really good use case to justify the 10–20 million dollar expense, according to experts at the event.

Details are currently light, but the product seems to offer the ability to schedule uplink/downlink time by the minute and get the data immediately access-able on AWS. According to AWS, Customers using AWS Ground Station gain the ability to download data from multiple satellites at the same time and to continue downloading data even when unplanned outages like a weather event impact parts of the network.

Also announced today is Verge, a low cost parabolic antenna (S band) network that keeps the earth in contact in a much more regular way than the current stations only periodic access that is caused by geographic distribution issues. Lockheed Martin is the creator of these antennas.

These antennas are connected to a digitizer, which then sends the data through AWS direct connect into a Lockheed martin operated VPC that then combines all the signals from all of the antennas and integrates it into one RF over IP data stream. Software defined receivers can then process it in the cloud for end users.

In its continual onslaught of democratizing things that used to cost a lot of money, AWS has once again launched a service thats probably going to spawn a large amount of startups and help you get things like real time maps from space, which in my book is pretty cool. It looks like humanity is going to be hearing a lot more from the sky sometime soon.

These announcements are additionally relevant considering that Amazon’s Founder also owns Blue Origin.

We will be updating as more information comes our way

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