LightSquared, the mobile satellite venture owned by Harbinger Capital Partners, took an important step toward the completion of its planned satellite-terrestrial broadband network with the successful launch of the SkyTerra-1 satellite from the Baikanur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Monday. Built by Boeing and carried into space via a Russian Proton Breeze M rocket, SkyTerra-1 is the first satellite to be launched by the LightSquared venture, which aims to bring its nationwide long-term evolution (LTE) broadband network into service next year. Positioned at 101.3° West Longitude, SkyTerra-1 boasts a 22-meter reflector-based L-band antenna—the largest commercial antenna reflector ever placed into service—that will provide spot-beam coverage in remote areas beyond the reach of LightSquared’s terrestrial LTE wireless network. In addition to extending network coverage throughout the United States, SkyTerra-1’s 500 spot beams are expected to facilitate frequency and bandwidth re-use throughout LightSquared’s full coverage area while providing a higher power signal on the ground. LightSquared, which expects to cover 92% of the U.S. population by 2015, plans to provide connectivity on a wholesale basis to carriers that, in turn, will offer broadband service to end-users. Applauding the launch, LightSquared CEO Sanjiv Ahuja declared that “LightSquared has achieved a major milestone in the realization of [its] mission to revolutionize the wireless industry in the United States.”