having just launched a satellite at the day job (and another coming this next year), i can confirm that i’ve never seen *anything* that bunches the undies quite like that.
while losing the satellite during launch tears a huge hole in the project schedule, all birds are insured against launch failures, at least enough to replace the bird. but that is scant solace during the last couple of minutes of profuse sweating. Protostar I went on an Ariane 5E which took a while to establish its credibility, so that was in the back of everyone’s minds. The launch did go just fine, but once the solids light, all you can do is watch and hang on for dear life.
As for Internet via Satellite…
With the exception of broadcast services like DirecTV where satellites are usually the best choice, satellite communication is a technology of last resort. The paths are long, the delays are large, and it’s all very cranky, especially with a terminal on a boat. But if the choice is *no connectivity*, the satellite link looks pretty good. Compared to terrestrial, though, satellite is very seldom the first choice, if you have a choice.
Posted by: Mike at August 21, 2008 12:50 AM
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