Special Report

Companies With the Most Satellites in Orbit

Source: Courtesy of Chang Guang Satellite Technology Co. Ltd.

11. Chang Guang Satellite Technology Co. Ltd.
> Active satellites in orbit as of Jan. 1 2022: 29
> Country of operator: China
> Oldest operational satellite: Jilin-1 (launched 10/7/2015)
> Newest operational satellite (excl. 2022 launches): Jilin 1 Gaofen 02F (launched 10/27/2021)

Based in China’s northeastern Jilin province, Chang Guang Satellite is China’s first remote sensing satellite company, controlling a constellation of high-resolution Earth observation satellites. Its high-resolution images can be used for urban planning as well as in the mining, maritime, forestry, and agriculture industries.

Source: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

10. Globalstar
> Active satellites in orbit as of Jan. 1 2022: 32
> Country of operator: United States
> Oldest operational satellite: Globalstar FM37 (launched 3/15/1999)
> Newest operational satellite (excl. 2022 launches): Globalstar M078 (launched 2/6/2013)

This Covington, Louisiana-based satellite communications company can connect and relay data and satellite-phone communications from any location for consumers, companies, or governmental agencies. The company recently announced an agreement with a “large, global customer” to build a new communications network. That customer is rumored to be Apple.

Source: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

9. Intelsat S.A.
> Active satellites in orbit as of Jan. 1 2022: 33
> Country of operator: United States
> Oldest operational satellite: JCSat R (launched 2/16/1997)
> Newest operational satellite (excl. 2022 launches): Galaxy-30 (launched 8/15/2020)

Luxembourg-based Intelsat provides satellite communications for general air, land, and sea operations as well as disaster response and civil defense efforts. It also provides internet connectivity. The company’s acquisition last year of Gogo Commercial Aviation expanded its in-flight broadband connectivity on commercial flights.

Source: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

8. ORBCOMM Inc.
> Active satellites in orbit as of Jan. 1 2022: 35
> Country of operator: United States
> Oldest operational satellite: ORBCOMM FM-10 (launched 12/23/1997)
> Newest operational satellite (excl. 2022 launches): ORBCOMM FM-118 (launched 12/22/2015)

Rochelle Park, New Jersey-based ORBCOMM specializes in Internet of Things, or IoT, the technology that allows machines to communicate with each other. It recently announced a deal with U.K.’s CoolKit to monitor and track the company’s fleet of refrigerated vans used in the pharmaceutical, health care, food, and agricultural industries.

Source: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

7. SES S.A.
> Active satellites in orbit as of Jan. 1 2022: 48
> Country of operator: Multinational
> Oldest operational satellite: TDRS-5 (launched 8/2/1991)
> Newest operational satellite (excl. 2022 launches): SES-17 (launched 10/24/2021)

Luxembourg-based SES operates satellites that provide global video streaming and data connectivity. Its 2016 acquisition of O3b Networks kicked off a years-long project to build a communications satellite system (under the name O3b mPOWER) that will expand broadband connectivity to rural areas in developing countries.

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