Inmarsat signs contract for next generation satellites

satellite in space

Inmarsat, the world’s premier provider or mobile satellite communications, is proud to announce the signing of a contract with International Launch Services (ILS) to launch the new Inmarsat-5 satellite on board ILS’ Proton launch vehicle. The three state-of-the-art 702HP Ka-band spacecraft, currently being built by Boeing, are scheduled to launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrone in Kazakhstan in 2013-2014. The I-5’s will support Inmarsats forthcoming Global Xpress™ network.

Including launch costs, Inmarsat will invest an estimated US$1.2 billion in the Global Xpress program. Global Xpress will offer seamless global coverage and deliver unprecedented mobile broadband speeds of up to 50Mbps, providing Global access to all sectors of the market, including government, maritime, enterprise, energy and aeronautical.

Inmarsats most recent launch, the Inmarsat-4, was successfully carried out by ILS from Baikonur in August 2008. The Proton vehicle is Russia’s premier heavy-lift launcher and is built by Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center, the majority owner of ILS. The Proton has successfully launched 31 consecutive missions since July 2008, 365 missions since its maiden flight in 1965.

“Selecting a launch services provider is a critical part of realizing our Global Xpress vision,” said Andrew Sukawaty, chairman and CEO of Inmarsat. “Our agreement with ILS shows that we are well on track with our aggressive program for Global Xpress, with service planned to start in 2013. We have partnered with ILS and Khrunichev for previous launches, and look forward to a successful campaign for Inmarsat-5.”

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