Successful Second Launch of Skynet 5 Satellite
Successful Second Launch of Skynet 5 Satellite
Paradigm prepares for second Skynet 5
satellite to enter full service.
Source : Astrium.
Kourou, 15 November 2007 -- (Astrium)
-- Astrium has achieved a second triple challenge with the successful launch of
the second Skynet 5 satellite - Skynet 5B – on 14 November from Kourou, French
ESA–CNES–Arianespace - 2007 © Photo
François Auque, CEO of Astrium, said: “Progressing from the
success of Skynet 5A, this marks another major milestone for Astrium with our
latest triple challenge – building the Skynet 5 satellites, placing them in
orbit on-board Ariane 5, and delivering a new era in secure military
communications to the UK Ministry of Defence, in the form of a unique service
Malcolm Peto, Managing Director of Paradigm said: "This is
the culmination of many years of co-operation between industry and the Ministry
of Defence and will further enhance Paradigm's ability to deliver mission
critical communications services to our deployed military customers, faster and
better than ever. The best Armed Forces in the world deserve the best
communications service. And that is what we provide with Skynet 5."
Paradigm, part of Astrium Services, as owner and operator of
the Skynet 5 system, is responsible for delivering secure communications
services as part of a service provision contract with the UK Ministry of Defence
(MoD) until 2020. Following the successful launch of Skynet 5A in March 2007
Paradigm is already providing secure services to the UK MoD.
Astrium Space Transportation is prime contractor for the
Ariane 5 system, responsible for the delivery of fully integrated and tested
launch vehicles to Arianespace.
Astrium Satellites is responsible for the Skynet 5 satellites
and the complete communications system. Following launch, Skynet 5B, designed
and built by Astrium Satellites, will now undergo a period of intensive in-orbit
testing of both satellite and payload before moving to its operational position
at 53°E. Initial transfer of services will commence in the coming weeks.
Skynet 5B is the second of three satellites that will form a
new constellation to meet the UK MoD’s milsatcoms requirements - one of the
three will be an in-orbit spare, to guard against satellite loss.
Following the successful launch at 22.06 GMT last night,
Skynet 5B is currently in its low Earth orbit phase, which began with partial
deployment of the solar panels. Skynet 5B will then reach its geostationary
orbit, followed by the deployment of the UHF receivers and transmitters and a
full testing programme will commence before the first operations begin. This
process will take around a month to complete.
The achievements of the Skynet 5 programme are underpinned by
effective partnering between the MoD and industry. Paradigm, Astrium Satellites,
Serco, LogicaCMG, EADS DS and the MoD have worked together to make the project a
success for all the stakeholders.
Astrium, a wholly owned subsidiary of EADS, is dedicated to
providing civil and defence space systems and services. In 2006, Astrium had a
turnover of €3.2 billion and 12,000 employees in France, Germany, the United
Kingdom, Spain and the Netherlands. Its three main areas of activity are:
Astrium Space Transportation for launchers and orbital infrastructure, Astrium
Satellites for spacecraft and ground segment, and its wholly owned subsidiary
Astrium Services for the development and delivery of satellite services. EADS is
a global leader in aerospace, defence and related services. In 2006, EADS
generated revenues of €39.4 billion and employed a workforce of more than 116,
Rémi Roland - (Astrium FR) - Tel.: +33 (0)1 77 75 80 37
Jeremy Close - (Astrium UK) - Tel.: +44 (0)1438 77 3872
Mathias Pikelj - (Astrium GER) - Tel.: +49 (0) 7545 8 91 23
- Paradigm - Tel.: +44 (0)1249 85 3754
Skynet 5 : Next-generation
Satellites for Military Communications Services
The UK MoD and Paradigm Secure Communications Limited, a
wholly owned EADS Astrium subsidiary, signed the €3.6 billion Skynet 5 Private
Finance Initiative (PFI) contract in October 2003. Paradigm Secure
Communications then awarded Astrium the contract for supply of the Skynet 5
next-generation military satellite communications system.
Astrium is prime contractor to Paradigm for the design and
build of the complete Skynet 5 system. This comprises three Skynet 5
spacecraft as well as a major upgrade of the fixed terrestrial infrastructure,
networks and management systems in the UK and provision of over 160 satellite
communications terminals. Skynet 5A was launched in March 2007, 5B in November
2007, with 5C scheduled for 2008.
The Skynet 5 satellites are based on the new high-power
E3000 variant of Astrium’s well-proven Eurostar series which has accumulated
over 200 years operational life. Each Skynet 5 spacecraft will have a launch
mass of around 5 tonnes, compared to 1.6 tonnes for Skynet 4F, and a payload
power of 5kW, up to four times the power of Skynet 4.
The ground systems being delivered by Astrium as part of
the Skynet 5 programme include 59 Reacher tactical vehicle-mounted units in
various configurations, capable of standing up to the rigours of all-terrain
transport and operation in harsh environments.
Astrium is also responsible for a complete upgrade of the
UK Royal Navy’s SCOT shipborne satellite communications systems, which
involves the replacement of existing terminals on 28 ships. Installation of
these world-class systems is due for completion by 2008 to provide effective
and reliable communications services through to 2020. (Source
: EADS Astrium)