The FCC Has Levied a $900,000 Fine Against Swarm for Unauthorized Satellite Launch

Discussion in 'HardForum Tech News' started by cageymaru, Dec 20, 2018.

  1. cageymaru

    cageymaru [H]ard as it Gets

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    Swarm Technologies Inc has been ordered to pay a $900,000 fine by the FCC for "unauthorized deployment and operation of satellites, unauthorized operation of earth ground stations, and other unauthorized operation and testing of radio frequency equipment." The FCC had denied Swarm Technologies' application to launch the experimental satellites a month before, but CEO Sara Spangelo allowed the company's Spacebees satellites launch to proceed without authorization. Swarm Technologies admitted to the launch when the FCC discovered it and more infractions such as unauthorized weather balloon-to-ground station tests, unauthorized tests of its satellite and ground station equipment. Swarm has admitted guilt, entered into a 5-year compliance plan, and will pay a $900,000 fine.

    Since July, the FCC has allowed Swarm Technologies to operate the Spacebees until February 2019. Swarm Technologies has unfurled its plan to provide affordable global communications for Internet of Things (IOT) devices. The FCC has even allowed the startup to launch three more satellites to provide global internet access on December 3, 2018. The company looks forward to deploying a global constellation in 2019.

    When I asked Spangelo why she didn't stop the launch when the FCC denied Swarm's application, she said, "Others have been granted applications after launching their satellites, so we were still hopeful at that point." The FCC declined to comment on whether the agency has approved applications by companies after they carry out a launch.
     
  2. maxz01

    maxz01 Limp Gawd

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    Do first apologize later, I too follow this motto. Only way to get stuff you believe in done. Worry too much about stepping on peoples toes and you never take risks and assert yourself upon the world.
     
  3. Lakados

    Lakados [H]ard|Gawd

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    Well they are already up there.... Fining them out of existence won’t change that.
     
  4. piscian18

    piscian18 [H]ardForum Junkie

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  5. Nenu

    Nenu [H]ardened

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    A laser would :D
     
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  6. Elf_Boy

    Elf_Boy 2[H]4U

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    Too bad the fcc doesn't have anything useful or productive to accomplish.
     
  7. LightsOut41

    LightsOut41 Limp Gawd

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  8. hlfbkd420

    hlfbkd420 Limp Gawd

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  9. CptCabbit

    CptCabbit Limp Gawd

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    Or let we be we so let us see.
     
  10. rewted

    rewted [H]ard|Gawd

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    What's more interesting out of this is that this didn't trigger any sort of news / alert from any space or defense agency... unless they got coordination and the FCC didn't. I would've expected this to be a major incident otherwise.
     
  11. blandead

    blandead Limp Gawd

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    You know this happened back in march? This is just the fines they decided to settle with, not much news to any agency

    The FCC warned the original design size puts other satellites at risk of a collision, seemed like a reasonable decision

    so instead of fixing their design they went to India and launched it in secret
     
  12. ChoGGi

    ChoGGi [H]ard|Gawd

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    You're a fan of Kessler syndrome?
     
  13. Vader1975

    Vader1975 Gawd

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    We are going to fine you for putting something into space in another country. Because we own space. Didn't you know.
     
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  14. Nenu

    Nenu [H]ardened

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    Kerbal Space program is cool :)
     
  15. Wrecked Em

    Wrecked Em [H]ardness Supreme

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    I'm guessing their issue has more to do with transmitting RF into the US, than it does with the satellites being there.

    Imagine discovering the hard way that your car's autobrake system no longer worked because some silicon Valley startup decided to start broadcasting across somebody else's spectrum.
     
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  16. katanaD

    katanaD [H]ard|Gawd

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    yeah.. that was interesting.
     
  17. Wierdo

    Wierdo [H]ard|Gawd

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    Hmm, so there's some kinda size restriction on satellites, interesting. Did none of the other approved operators have something this small before?
     
  18. Dead Parrot

    Dead Parrot 2[H]4U

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    It wasn't a separate launch. The SpaceBees caught a lift on a rocket with many other payloads. The launch was well known and planned. The SpaceBees listed on the manifest. The SpaceBee company just skipped/ignored the "Get FCC OK Before launch" step.
     
  19. lcpiper

    lcpiper [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Yea, just take their shit and use it for target practice, save the tax payer some money.
     
  20. Filter

    Filter [H]ardForum Junkie

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    always better to ask for forgiveness the permission. dude should be put in jail.
     
  21. blandead

    blandead Limp Gawd

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    If they did then most likely had to include a way for other satellites to detect them or prove it can auto maneuver around them. Maybe both.

    There's other factors to consider besides the size, such as the orbital path and distance from earth and how long they can orbit before burning up in the atmosphere.
     
  22. Vader1975

    Vader1975 Gawd

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    And you own RF in space? Same issue