[Via Satellite 07-24-2015] The 67,000km move of Airbus Defence and Space’s Skynet 5A satellite from 6 degrees east to its new position at 94.8 degrees east is on track to arrive this autumn. Airbus Defence and Space announced the relocation at the SATELLITE 2015 Conference & Exhibition in March earlier this year. The move boosts the company’s capability to provide protected and secure military satcom services to allied governments in the Asia-Pacific region.
The relocation will extend the Skynet constellation coverage and services from 178 west to 163 east, including the Indian Ocean and Western Pacific region. This will provide near-global military X-band and Ultra High Frequency (UHF) coverage, expanding core service reach for the U.K. military and augment coalition capabilities in the region.
Airbus Defence and Space owns and operates the nuclear-hardened Skynet X-band satellite constellation of eight satellites and the ground network to provide all Beyond Line of Sight (BLOS) communications to the U.K. Ministry of Defence. The contract also allows other NATO and allied governments such as members of the five-eyes community (besides the U.K., the U.S., Australia, New Zealand and Canada) to use the Skynet system to augment their existing services. Airbus Defence and Space also leases the X-band hosted payload on Telesat’s Anik G1 satellite, which covers the Americas and parts of the Pacific including Hawaii and Easter Island.
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