China-based Geespace said this week that its first two IoT satellites will undergo final validation testing in June before being shipped to the company’s Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center for launch into low-orbit. Currently, both satellites have been successfully produced and verified with all performance metrics meeting design specifications ahead of further environmental testing.
This development arrives two years after Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, the Chinese automotive giant behind Lotus and Volvo, entered the aerospace industry with the establishment of Geespace under the Geely Technology Group in 2018.
Geespace satellites represent Geely’s support and investment in new infrastructure. This new satellite network is aimed at supporting the company’s autonomous vehicle initiatives, and it will also support future mobility, intelligent manufacturing, unmanned drone flight, urban management, and other applications.
Satellite-based AI cloud platform
The new satellites are designed to provide users with high-precision centimetre-accurate positioning services. They are also part of OmniCloud, a new satellite-based AI cloud platform that was developed by GeeSpace.
OmniCloud is an open platform that utilises satellite network data to provide support for satellite-based products and services. Via the use of OmniCloud, urban traffic management can be made more efficient through services such as high-precision positioning data for vehicles, artificial intelligence, public transportation fleet management, ride-hailing and ride-sharing management.
OmniCloud will be rolled out simultaneously with the launch of the IoT satellites in the second half of 2020.
For the development of autonomous drive, OmniCloud will be able to monitor surroundings through the use of fully connected infrastructure and vehicles, allowing it to assist with AI decision making to support safe and highly autonomous driving. In the industrial sector, OmniCloud can provide support with the help of sensors on manufacturing equipment, allowing operators to remotely monitor, control, and maintain equipment anytime and anywhere.
In as early as 2010, Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Chairman, Li Shufu laid out his vision for the future of Geely Holding’s transition towards being a technology-driven company with social innovation at its core.
“With our feet on the ground, we should always keep an eye on the wider universe. We should protect the environment on earth and push for sustainable development here, but at the same time we should also look to develop in the stars as well,” he said.