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Sunday, June 5, 2022

Geely Launches Satellites For Planned Self-Driving Car Fleet


Geespace, a fully-owned subsidiary of the Geely Technology Group and China’s first privately-owned developer, operator, and mass producer of low-orbit commercial satellites, has successfully launched its first nine satellites into low earth orbit from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center.

Geespace’s terrestrial base station in Korla, China has reported that they have connected the first nine GeeSAT-1 satellites and which are all functioning correctly post launch. These first satellites are part of a planned constellation – the “Geely Future Mobility Constellation” – that will consist of 240 satellites, with the first phase of 72 satellites expected to be placed in orbit by 2025. The second phase will follow consisting of 168 satellites.

Geespace’s GeeSAT-1 are the first modular, high-resilience, high-performance, mass-produced low-orbit satellites in China. They will provide centimeter accurate precise positioning and connectivity support for use by automotive brands in the Geely Holding portfolio, enabling true, safe autonomous driving that will connect vehicles with vehicles and infrastructure with vehicles to realize true autonomous driving.

Once in orbit, the sustainably developed satellites have an operating lifespan of five years, after which the satellites would propel themselves into earth’s atmosphere, where they will disintegrate without leaving any space debris.

With the successful launch and operation of Geespace’s first satellites, the company has become one of the world’s first providers of combined commercial Precise Point Positioning and Real-Time Kinematic services (PPP-RTK).

Planned applications in the near future include working with logistic sector partners to create the first one-stop logistics monitoring service platform with real-time management and control of the transportation process, helping protect the environment with Geely Holding’s “Blue Guardian” CSR project by monitoring maritime water quality and identifying debris patches to be cleaned. They will also empower the upcoming Asian Games with high-precision positioning, remote sensing, and satellite communication services.

Geespace operates and manages its satellite constellation through a network of ground stations in China established in Qingdao, Taizhou, Korla, Chengdu, and Harbin. Initially, service coverage will be provided to the Chinese market and the Asia-Pacific region with plans for expanding global coverage after 2026.

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