Facebook loses its first satellite on SpaceX rocket explosion

The explosion SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket at Cape Canaveral has left wounded but an unexpected victim: Facebook. The mission was aimed at putting into orbit communications satellite AMOS 6 developed by Spacecom and Facebook had rented for five years to begin deploying Internet.org, an initiative to connect to the network few developed areas of the planet.

“I am deeply disappointed after the SpaceX rocket explosion that has destroyed our satellite, with ability to offer access throughout the African continent , ” he wrote Mark Zuckerberg on his Facebook page after the news.

The founder of the social network, however, has not lost hope in the Internet.org project. “We have developed other technologies such as sun Aquila drone – a freelance basis to achieve the same goal and work so that everyone has the quality of connection that the satellite would have provided , ” he added.


The explosion occurred during a test ignition has been done with the burden of the already installed mission. Initial investigations indicate a failure in the launch pad, not in the rocket itself, as the reason for the blast. Liftoff was scheduled for this Saturday . The satellite, with an approximate cost of 200 million dollars, would have allowed Facebook to provide Internet access on a large part of the population of sub-Saharan Africa.

Zuckerberg is these days in Africa by promoting precisely Internet.org an Internet access service subsidized and very low cost which aims to connect the next billion people.

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The program has been criticized on several occasions for violating net neutrality by allowing free access to some sponsored by certain companies, such as Facebook own or Wikipedia, but does not give access to other tools webs. “It is not a neutral platform is not secure and is not Internet “ , summed up in May 2015 , the EFF, a nonprofit organization that protects the rights of Internet users .

Facebook has launched the service in several developing countries through agreements with local telephone providers but in some areas the authorities have reacted negatively. On 11 February, for example, Facebook had to withdraw from India after the national regulator on the telecommunications market considers that the service is a violation of local laws on data traffic.


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