- SpaceX and European competitor Arianespace win $390 million worth of Intelsat launches
- The launch contracts are worth a combined $390 million, although Intelsat declined to specify how the money will be split between the two launch companies.
- The satellites and launches are part of Intelsat’s C-band spectrum “transition plan,” which was ordered by the FCC earlier this year
Intelsat picked SpaceX and its European rival Arianespace to dispatch seven satellites in the coming years, with the agreements worth a consolidated $390 million.
Under the particulars of the agreement, starting in 2022 Intelsat will dispatch four of its satellites on two SpaceX Falcon 9 rockets and two additional satellites on an Ariane 5 rocket. The last seventh satellite is contracted with both SpaceX and Arianespace, as a path for Intelsat to ensure it dispatches on schedule. Intelsat will grant whichever organization doesn’t dispatch the seventh satellite with an agreement for a different later dispatch.
Maxar Technologies is building five of the satellites for Intelsat and Northrop Grumman is building the other two.
The satellites and dispatches are essential for Intelsat’s C-band range “change plan,” which was requested by the Federal Communications Commission prior this year. Fundamentally, the FCC needs to utilize a scope of frequencies for 5G versatile administrations on the ground that is at present used by satellites organizations. To do as such, the FCC is paying organizations to supplant satellites – a program that may see Intelsat acquire almost $5 billion. The clearing installments will likewise help relieve Intelsat’s obligation burden, which had move to nearly $15 billion preceding the organization intentionally petitioned for Chapter 11 insolvency insurance in May.
Intelsat plans for the initial two dispatches to happen in the second from last quarter of 2022, the third in the final quarter of 2022, and the last dispatch in the second 50% of 2023.