SES To Roll Out Three New Satellites in 2017

SES has announced plans for the procurement of three new satellites, SES-14, SES-15 and SES-16/GovSat, all to be launched in 2017. As announced on 16 February, SES has ordered three next-generation satellites, SES-14, SES-15 and SES-16/GovSat, the latter together with the Luxembourg Government in a new joint venture, LuxGovSat.

The satellites are using the newest spacecraft technologies, leading to optimal performance and highest efficiency and allowing SES to address the accelerating needs of fast growing markets where SES is already well positioned. The satellites will be manufactured by Airbus Space and Defence, Boeing and Orbital AKT, respectively. The new orders bring the total number of SES satellites currently under procurement to seven, out of which six are delivering incremental growth capacity.

“The new spacecraft will support our growth and add significant high-power capacity to all four key strategic business verticals – video, data, mobility and government,” says Karim Michel Sabbagh, President and CEO of SES. “These fleet investments – all delivered within SES’s forecast CapEx envelope – enable us to differentiate our service offering in our target markets and set the foundation for continued growth. They will allow us to capture the significant potential of numerous vibrant regions and market segments, including Direct-to-Home (DTH) in Latin America, and mobility in the aeronautical and maritime sector throughout the Americas and the North Atlantic, as well as powerful end-to-end solutions for governments, defence and security.”

SES Teams with Luxembourg Government on SES-16
SES-16/GovSat is a state-of-the-art multi-mission satellite with high-powered and fully steerable beams for government missions. It will be owned and operated by LuxGovSat, a new joint venture between SES and the Luxembourg Government.
“These fleet investments augment our capacity to address the high demand for connectivity in several key regions and segments,“ continued Karim Michel Sabbagh. “They allow us to launch a full range of attractive offers for video distribution and platforms, and data, mobility and government services, with a focus on SES’s large and world-leading customers in the aeronautical and maritime sectors. They underscore our confidence in the high demand and growth potential in both emerging and mature markets and provide the basis for the creation of a truly unique combination of our geostationary fleet (GEO) with the medium earth orbit (MEO) fleet of O3b, in which we hold a 45 percent stake.“

SES ordered its new SES-15 satellite to provide growth capacity in North America and capture business potential in vibrant market segments. The new satellite is to be built by Boeing, due to be launched in Q2 2017 and will open up a new orbital location to serve North America.

In addition, SES has ordered its new SES-14 satellite to capture growth opportunities in dynamic markets, buoyant business segments and growing video neighborhoods across the Americas and the North Atlantic region.

SES-14 and SES-15 To Serve Americas
SES-14 and SES-15 are both powerful hybrid satellites, using Ku-, Ka- and – in the case of SES-14 – also C-band in wide-beam and high-throughput (HTS) technology and a purely electric propulsion system that significantly enhances the satellites’ economic efficiency thanks to the enhanced payload that can be carried as a result of the reduction in fuel mass.

SES-15 will carry a hybrid payload, with additional Ku-band wide beams and Ku- as well as Ka-band High Throughput Satellite (HTS) capability. The satellite will be equipped with an electric propulsion system for orbit raising and in-orbit manoeuvres.

SES-15 will solidify SES’s positioning in the aeronautical mobility and government markets, providing fresh capacity and coverage over major airline routes across the continent. SES-15 will enable SES to serve its leading aeronautical customers and serve other traffic intensive data applications such as government, VSAT networks and maritime.

“The procurement of SES-15 shows our strong confidence in this dynamic market,” says Martin Halliwell, CTO, SES. “It will give us new growth momentum and strengthen our position in the important North American government and mobility markets. The innovative electric propulsion system significantly improves the efficiency of the satellite. The hybrid payload with wide beams and high throughput capacity gives aeronautical, maritime and governmental customers unprecedented power and flexibility to develop very attractive next generation data services.”

“We designed the 702SP satellite to meet our customer’s mission requirements as efficiently as possible by reducing the spacecraft mass to take advantage of low cost launch vehicles while maximizing the revenue-generating capability of the payload,” says Mark Spiwak, President Boeing Satellite Systems International.

Meanwhile SES-14 satellite will be built by Airbus Space and Defence, is scheduled for launch in Q4 2017 and will operate at 47.5/48 degrees West, where it will replace SES’s satellite NSS-806 and add new capacity.

SES-14 is a hybrid satellite with C- and Ku-band wide beam coverage, as well as Ku- and Ka-band High Throughput Satellite (HTS) coverage across the Americas and the North Atlantic region. The satellite will fully rely on electric propulsion and will be equipped with an electric plasma propulsion system for orbit raising and in-orbit manoeuvres. The electric propulsion system delivers significant reduction in the weight of the satellite, enabling larger payloads to be carried. The new spacecraft will also feature a Digital Transparent Processor (DTP), increasing the payload flexibility to provide customized bandwidth solutions to SES’s customers.

SES-14’s Ku-band wide beams will bring augmented capacity to serve growing Direct-to-Home and Direct-to-Cable video neighborhoods in the Americas and support existing VSAT services in both bands. The multi-spot Ku- and Ka-band beams will bring additional, high throughput capacity and are ideal for traffic-intensive data applications such as mobile backhaul, maritime and aeronautical services.

“The procurement of SES-14, the first high power satellite in the four-tonne class, extends our offering to customers in the Americas and further solidifies SES’s positioning in these dynamic markets. The new spacecraft combines a large footprint with a powerful hybrid payload and significant spacecraft technology innovations. It will help us to capture important growth potential, address the needs of video and enterprise customers and support the development of Next Generation Video and Next Generation Data services. Furthermore, it complements O3b’s high throughput satellite capacity in the medium earth orbit and helps us to deliver a truly unique and integrated offering.”

“SES once again demonstrates its responsiveness in a changing market, and we are pleased to be able to provide them with our very best technological innovation for both the payload and the platform,” said François Auque, Head of Space Systems at Airbus. “On SES-14, as on SES-12, the mass saving from electric propulsion enables us to combine two high-capacity missions, equivalent to two conventional satellites in one satellite.”

SES, Luxembourg Team Up for New Satellite
SES has announced the procurement of a new satellite jointly with the Luxembourg government. The satellite, SES-16/GovSat, has been ordered by LuxGovSat, a new joint venture between SES and the Luxembourg government, from the satellite manufacturer Orbital ATK. It will be positioned at 21.5 degrees East and is scheduled for launch in Q2 2017.

SES-16/GovSat is a multi-mission satellite using dedicated military frequencies (X-band and military Ka-band) to provide high-powered and fully steerable spot beams for multiple government-specific missions. The satellite will cover Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The Luxembourg government has pre-committed to a significant amount of capacity on the new satellite in support of its NATO obligations; the remaining capacity will be made available to governmental and institutional customers.

This procurement is incorporated in SES’s current capital expenditure guidance.

“The procurement of SES-16/GovSat opens a new chapter in the strategically important government business vertical and in the cooperation between SES and the Luxembourg government,” says Halliwell. “SES-16/GovSat will ensure flexibility for the ever-changing missions of governments and institutions in the security, defence and civil arenas and will allow for the deployment of integrated and smart end-to-end managed solutions for these demanding customers.”

“SES is one of the world’s most prominent satellite operators and this contract demonstrates a continued confidence in our GEOStar product line. As a customer-focused company known for innovation, reliability and affordability, we are pleased to provide LuxGovSat with a high-quality satellite that will meet expectations in cost, schedule and performance,” says Chris Richmond, VP and GM of the Commercial Satellite Division at Orbital ATK’s Space Systems Group. “Based on our exceptional record of delivering flight-proven satellites on time and on budget, Orbital ATK continues to be a partner that SES and the Government of Luxembourg can count on.”

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