Microsoft, SpaceX Partner on Satellite Cloud Services

  • Microsoft's competitor Amazon disclosed its space cloud service plan.
  • Amazon is the leader in the cloud service market, while Microsoft ranks second.
  • SpaceX and XArc will conduct a study with the USTC.

Microsoft will contract with SpaceX, a space exploration technology company under Elon Musk, to provide satellite-based cloud services to challenge the market leader, Amazon. According to the report, Microsoft will use SpaceX’s large number of low-orbit satellites and traditional satellites at higher altitudes to help connect and deploy new services.

Microsoft headquarters

About three months before this, Microsoft‘s competitor, Amazon, disclosed its space cloud service plan. Amazon said at the time that it would establish an aerospace and satellite solutions department to promote the development of aerospace-related cloud computing business.

Some analysts predict that by the end of this century, the total revenue of space-related cloud services will reach approximately $15 billion, at least several times the current level.

Currently, Amazon is the leader in the cloud service market, while Microsoft ranks second. In recent years, the competition between the two companies has been heating up. This year’s new coronavirus epidemic has further intensified the competition, as more and more companies have accelerated their shift to cloud computing. At the same time, military and intelligence agencies are also increasing spending on a series of space projects.

This time, Microsoft’s goal is to create an integrated, secure network that connects various cloud, space, and ground capabilities. For example, the system will integrate and analyze large amounts of data, support missions such as space debris monitoring and missile warning, and help control the orbits of commercial satellites.

Currently, SpaceX is deploying its StarLink network consisting of thousands of high-speed Internet satellites, aiming to provide Internet services worldwide. For this reason, SpaceX has become an ideal partner of Microsoft.

Microsoft also said that in addition to SpaceX, it will also launch the same cooperation with Luxembourg satellite operator SES.

NASA announces first SpaceX crewed flight

SpaceX and Exploration Architecture (XArc) to Conduct a Study

According to news sources, SpaceX and Exploration Architecture (XArc) will conduct a study with the United States Transportation Command (USTC) to evaluate the use of rockets for long-distance cargo transportation feasibility.

The research was announced by Army General Stephen Lyons, the head of USTC, earlier this month. After his disclosure, people speculated that the California launch service provider had already cooperated with the military to develop cargo transport rockets.

However, the comments by Mr. Musk made it clear that the USTC Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) did not offer financial incentives to his company. He also proposed that the major missions of Starship would include trips to the Moon, Mars, and other planets, which would require people largely.

According to him, the starship is supposed to move people and cargo all over the world. Civil use would be the overwhelming majority of applications. It’s like an airline, he says. Any airline carries military freight occasionally, but 99 percent is civilian.

The Starship can obtain NASA’s manned certification after it has finished the production and testing process of the spaceship. Starship is now one of the three NASA-approved platforms, in addition to its goals to colonize Mars and to include commercial flights on Earth. It designed a lunar lander as part of the Artemis program of the agency.

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Joyce Davis

My history goes back to 2002 and I  worked as a reporter, interviewer, news editor, copy editor, managing editor, newsletter founder, almanac profiler, and news radio broadcaster.

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