Hispasat Buys GEO Satellite From Thales Alenia Space

 In Air, Industrial, Space

Hispasat Chief Executive Miguel Ángel Panduro said Amazonas Nexus will be “the most dynam­ic and advanced satel­lite in our fleet.” Credit: Thales Alenia Space

WASHINGTON — Hispasat pur­chased a satel­lite from Thales Alenia Space Jan. 10, mark­ing the operator’s first satel­lite order since being acquired by Spanish power com­pa­ny Red Eléctrica last year. 

Thales Alenia Space will build a new satel­lite called Amazonas Nexus, designed with Ku-band cov­er­age over both American con­ti­nents, plus Greenland and North Atlantic trans­porta­tion routes. Hispasat and Thales Alenia Space signed the man­u­fac­tur­ing con­tract in Madrid. 

Amazonas Nexus will replace Hispasat’s Amazonas‑2, an 11-year-old satel­lite locat­ed at 61-degrees west that pro­vides C- and Ku-band cov­er­age of Pan-America.

Satellite oper­a­tors have increas­ing­ly pushed man­u­fac­tur­ers to not build satel­lites with frozen cov­er­age pat­terns, but with flex­i­bil­i­ty to change the loca­tion, power and even shape of their com­mu­ni­ca­tions beams. Hispasat is no excep­tion. 

Thales Alenia Space said Amazonas Nexus will fea­ture a new dig­i­tal trans­par­ent proces­sor that will allow Hispasat to reas­sign the satellite’s capac­i­ty as mar­kets change. 

Hispasat Chief Executive Miguel Ángel Panduro said Amazonas Nexus will be “the most dynam­ic and advanced satel­lite in our fleet” after it launch­es in the second half of 2022. A launch provider has not been announced. 

Amazonas Nexus will have Ka-band feeder links for teleme­try and con­trol, a fea­ture Hispasat said will opti­mize com­mu­ni­ca­tions with gate­way ground sta­tions and free up more onboard capac­i­ty for com­mer­cial appli­ca­tions. 

Amazonas Nexus has a pro­ject­ed mass of 4,500 kilo­grams, 20 kilo­watts of onboard power, all-elec­tric propul­sion, and a design life of 15 years. Commercial cus­tomers have signed long-term leases for close to 30% of the satellite’s capac­i­ty prior to launch, Hispasat said, pro­vid­ing anchor cus­tomers to val­i­date the operator’s busi­ness plan for the satel­lite. 

Though based in Spain, more than 65% of Hispasat’s rev­enue comes from the Americas, mainly Latin America. Hispasat, citing research firm Euroconsult, said demand for geo­sta­tion­ary data capac­i­ty is expect­ed to grow five­fold in “the American con­ti­nent” over the next 10 years. Amazonas Nexus is designed to cap­i­tal­ize on that pro­ject­ed growth, par­tic­u­lar­ly for broad­band to air­craft, ships and gov­ern­ment end users. 

Hispasat and Thales Alenia Space said they will make exten­sive use of Spanish sup­pli­ers in build­ing the Amazonas Nexus satel­lite. Hispasat reg­u­lar­ly involves Spanish sub­con­trac­tors to build equip­ment for its satel­lites, such as Sener, GMV, and Indra. The oper­a­tor has its own policy of geo­graph­ic indus­tri­al return that it says has result­ed in more than 1 bil­lion euros ($1.1 bil­lion) of invest­ment by inter­na­tion­al satel­lite man­u­fac­tur­ers into Spain.

Source: SpaceNews

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