Telstra signed a ten-year service agreement with OneWeb to build and maintain three teleports in Australia to deliver ground support for the satellite operator’s expanding fleet of low Earth orbit (LEO) birds in the Southern Hemisphere.

In a joint statement, the operator explained the project starts with building a ground station in Darwin Tivendale which is scheduled to go live in July. Two sites in Perth, Western Australia, are planned to be completed later in the year.

As part of the contract, Telstra will provide satellite gateway, monitoring and quality assurance services for OneWeb.

Vish Vishwanathan, VP of wholesale and satellite at Telstra Americas, stated it worked closely with OneWeb on site selection and construction criteria.

“Teleports are complex sites involving access to secure and resilient infrastructure and on-the-ground expertise, which Telstra has provided to OneWeb throughout this project.”

Michele Franci, chief of delivery and operations at OneWeb, argued LEO “technology is transforming the global connectivity landscape” by “creating new business opportunities” and “giving more businesses, communities and governments the internet access they need for progress”.

“More connectivity options benefit everyone and our approach in establishing strategic partnerships with experienced providers like Telstra is core to how we deliver the OneWeb mission.”

In early March, the companies signed a MoU to explore new connectivity services for Australia and Asia Pacific.