This answer to Might ISRO's 2018-004 launch be at least a technical violation of the Outer Space Treaty by India? clarifies some of the actions taken against Swarm Technologies for launching some SpaceBEEs on an ISRO rocket without receiving permission from their home country's government (US).

Question: In addition to all that, I'm still wondering if the SpaceBEEs did ultimately receive permission to operate, and/or if they are operating now and if so is that currently breaking some law or regulation.



1 Answer 1


The answer is YES, as corroborated by the following public infos on the Web:

  • Wikipedia lists the subsequent launches of SpaceBEE satellites commissioned by Swarm after the mishaps of the illegal launch of 12 Jan 2018, almost a hundred units, from various launchers in the world, including from two sites operated by the US Air Force (Vandenberg and CCSFS), and another one with India (again!).

  • Ephemeris of SpaceBEE are available freely on the Internet, provided by numerous independent sites, for example.

  • The following story from IEEE Spectrum(2019). It also gives some technical details on how Swarm subsequently fulfilled (or demonstrated so) its obligations vis-à-vis debris mitigation (kudos! then).

One interesting detail is the date and site of Swarm's 2nd launch. It was on Dec 3rd, 2018, from Vandenberg. That is BEFORE the official release by FCC of the agreed settlement between Swarm and FCC, as can be read from Reuters. Looks like somebody in the US government did arms twisting to somebody else!

  • $\begingroup$ Thanks! It's great when someone picks up an older question, digs in, and posts a great answer. $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    Jun 26, 2021 at 9:43

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