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NBN Satellite Hits Outback

Three NBN satellite stations are to hit outback Western Australia, it was announced today.

The satellite ground station in Geraldton (at Moonyoonooka), Carnarvon and Kalgoorlie will act as ‘transmission centres’ to deliver high speed broadband to outback communities across the state and territories.

The stations are part of the National Broadband Network’s Long Term Satellite Service, due to go live in 2015. NBN Co aims to cover 93 percent of Aussie premises with fibre broadband, while the remaining 7% will be served by satellite or wireless.

The stations located in outback Australia will also provide a boost to the local areas, NBN Co said today.

Construction is set to begin next year, with NBN Co saying the sites “have received the support of civic leaders” locally, after the fiasco in states including Victoria, where local councils rejected NBN tower planing applications on visibility grounds.

Image: artist impression of NBN satellite station, Bourke, NSW.

An estimated 20-30 workers will be required to build each of the facilities.

And speaking of satellites, NBN Co has even got NASA’s Buzz Aldrin in on the act. The Carnarvon site of the new NBN station played a role in providing communications for NASA’s space flight programme and the Apollo moon landings.

“I think it’s just wonderful that Carnarvon will soon be reviving its historic links with space with the launch of a National Broadband Network satellite base station,” said Dr. Aldrin.

 “The revitalisation of a site that played such a central role in NASA’s Apollo missions will prepare people in the Australian outback for the next frontier in communications via the National Broadband Network. “

Image: Image: artist impression of NBN satellite station Wolumla, NSW.

NBN Co also has the research gurus talking up its fledgling satellite services.

“High speed, robust and ubiquitous broadband is an absolute prerequisite for the most isolated parts of WA. The NBN’s satellite service represents a lifeline for people in regional and remote areas, “said Dr. Mal Bryce, chairman of the WA scientific and research organisation iVEC.

“It will ensure they have access to economic and social opportunities that the rest of us take for granted.”

NBN’s Interim Satellite Service is already delivering Internet services to more than 10,000 people in rural parts of Australia, offering wholesale download speeds up to 6 Mbps.

There are two other NBN communications satellites currently under construction in Bourke, north west NSW and Wolumla,  NSW Far South Coast.