Huge advertisements may soon start appearing in the sky over cities

A new research paper has explored the cost of putting massive advertisements in the sky over cities using satellites' constellation.

Huge advertisements may soon start appearing in the sky over cities
Published Oct 6, 2022 2:34 AM CDT   |   Updated Fri, Oct 28 2022 12:42 AM CDT
2 minutes & 7 seconds read time

If you thought you were seeing advertisements everywhere already, they might soon start polluting the skies, according to a new paper released by researchers.

Huge advertisements may soon start appearing in the sky over cities 063

The new paper published in the journal Aerospace explored the cost and strategies that would need to be put into place to get massive advertisements from brands up in the sky over cities. The researchers from the Moscow-based technical institute Skoltech along with the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology, found that a group of satellites of no more than fifty would need to be sent into orbit to create the ad, and that conducting such a mission would only cost approximately $65 million.

The team of researchers explored the technicals of this new form of advertising, called "space advertising", and according to the paper, each of the satellites would need to be considerably large to be able to reflect enough light to produce an image that's visible from Earth. The researchers estimated that a CubeSat satellite would need to sport a solar sail that's approximately 350 square foot and that the satellites wouldn't just showcase one ad from a brand but many different ads - rotating through a timer.

Huge advertisements may soon start appearing in the sky over cities 01

"We've been studying some of the more technical aspects of space advertising for a while now. This time we looked at the economic side of things and, as unrealistic as it may seem, we show that space advertising based on 50 or more small satellites flying in formation could be economically viable," said first author Shamil Biktimirov.

Would these be profitable for brands? That depends on many factors that would need to be taken into account. For example, space advertising only works around sunrise and sunset, as the satellites' solar sails require sunlight to produce the image. Additionally, cloud cover and cold nights forcing people indoors influence the overall revenue.

Furthermore, sending large groups of satellites into space to display ads from prominent brands isn't necessarily supported by astronomers as they are already having trouble with the growing amount of satellites in space photo-bombing their observations of the cosmos.

Huge advertisements may soon start appearing in the sky over cities 55

Despite the issues that engineers would have to overcome to make space advertising feasible, the team behind the paper estimated that a 91-day campaign with a constellation of satellites could generate as much as $111 million after all expenses are paid for.

In other news, Apple's CEO Tim Cook has seemingly casually thrown shade at Facebook founder and current Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg's Metaverse project. If you are interested in reading more about that story, check it out below.

Jak joined the TweakTown team in 2017 and has since reviewed 100s of new tech products and kept us informed daily on the latest science and space news. Jak's love for science, space, and technology, and, more specifically, PC gaming, began at 10 years old. It was the day his dad showed him how to play Age of Empires on an old Compaq PC. Ever since that day, Jak fell in love with games and the progression of the technology industry in all its forms. Instead of typical FPS, Jak holds a very special spot in his heart for RTS games.

Newsletter Subscription

    Related Tags

    Newsletter Subscription
    Latest News
    View More News
    Latest Reviews
    View More Reviews
    Latest Articles
    View More Articles