Eutelsat’s Thales Alenia Space-built communication satellite for the commercial telecommunications market has entered its final phase before launch.

The Konnect satellite was delivered to its launch site in French Guiana after completing a short and efficient launch campaign. All tests and inspections were completed at the launch site with sub-systems confirmed as flight-ready.

The satellite is mounted on the upper position of the secondary payload adapter and fitted on top of the launcher.

An Ariane 5 rocket will launch on 16 January with the satellite onboard, which will mark Ariane’s first launch this year.

Developed under an initiative of the European Space Agency (ESA), the satellite will provide broadband services for Europe and Africa.

A total of seven Spacebus Neo satellites have so far been developed and delivered by Thales Alenia Space under the ESA Partnership Project.

The Spacebus Neo is part of ESA’s programme of Advanced Research in Telecommunications Systems (ARTES) and the French PIA.

Undertaken in collaboration with ESA member states, the project is managed jointly by ESA and the French Space Agency, CNES.

Besides Eutelsat Konnect, the other Spacebus Neo missions include French government’s Syracuse-4, SES-17two additional Eutelsat missions called Konnect Very High Throughput Satellite and Eutelsat 10B, Indonesian operator Pasifik Satelit Nusantara’s Satria and Amazonas Nexus for Hispasat.