satmex satellite

Boeing has won a contract to build four all electric 702SP satellites for a joint venture between Asia Broadcast Satellite (ABS) and Satélites Mexicanos (Satmex).

702SP satellites are a smaller version of the company’s existing 702 satellites powered by electric propulsion systems, which will facilitate them to weigh less than satellites utilising conventional chemical propulsion systems.

Craig Cooning, Boeing Space & Intelligence Systems vice president and general manager, said: "Boeing invested two years in designing the 702SP ‘small platform’ satellite, which will operate in the 3- to 8-kilowatt power range."

He continued: "This is a natural evolution of our highly successful Boeing 702 product line and enables Boeing to continue its legacy of creating capable, low-risk, flexible designs at affordable prices."

The satellites are designed to operate in a geostationary orbit and are compatible with all launch vehicles, comprising Falcon 9, Ariane 5, Sea Launch, Proton, Soyuz, Atlas 5 and Delta IV.

Boeing said that the 702SP is designed to be flexible and affordable, with next-generation technology that offers enhanced performance while its avionics architecture shortens operations and provides improved access to data for assessment of the spacecraft’s health.

Cooning said: "We introduced the 702MP for ‘medium power’ in 2008, and we are excited at the opportunity to deliver the inaugural 702SP satellites to ABS and Satmex."

The company said that the 702SP satellites will enable ABS to expand expanding its current fleet to serve the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Ocean regions.

Thomas Choi, ABS chief executive officer, said: "The new satellite, ABS-3A, will allow the extension of C- and Ku-band services into the Atlantic Ocean region for our existing customers, and will allow us to diversify our market base for our future growth."

Satmex 7 is a hybrid satellite comprising both C- and Ku-band capacity that will serve Satmex’s Latin America customers while providing new expansion capacity for the company over the next decade.

The first two satellites which include ABS-3A and Satmex 7 are expected to be delivered together in late 2014 or by early 2015 and will be launched aboard Sapacex’s Falcon 9 rockets, with two satellites launched at a time.


Image: Satmex 7 hybrid satellite with both C- and Ku-band capacity will be deployed to serve Satmex’s Latin America customers. Image: Boeing image