A complicated telecommunications satellite that may be fully repurposed whereas in area has launched.
Developed beneath an ESA Partnership Project with satellite operator Eutelsat and prime producer Airbus, Eutelsat Quantum has pioneered a brand new technology of satellites with the European area business.The versatile software-defined satellite – which might be utilized by governments and in mobility and knowledge markets – was launched on board an Ariane 5 on 30 July from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana.
It has since reached geostationary orbit some 36 000 km above Earth, the place the spacecraft programs checkout was efficiently accomplished.Because the satellite may be reprogrammed in orbit, it might probably reply to altering calls for throughout its lifetime.Its beams may be redirected to maneuver in nearly actual time to supply data to passengers on board transferring ships, planes, vans, lorries and different land-based transport. The beams additionally may be simply adjusted to ship extra knowledge when demand surges.The satellite can detect and characterise any rogue emissions, enabling it to reply dynamically to unintentional interference or intentional jamming.The satellite will stay in geostationary orbit for its 15-year lifespan, after which it will likely be safely positioned in a graveyard orbit away from Earth to keep away from changing into a danger to different satellites.Eutelsat Quantum is a UK flagship mission with a lot of the satellite developed and manufactured by British business. Airbus is the prime contractor and was chargeable for constructing the satellite’s progressive payload, whereas Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd manufactured the brand new platform. The progressive part array antenna was developed by Airbus in Spain.ESA Partnership Projects develop sustainable end-to-end programs, proper as much as in-orbit validation.
UK Science Minister Amanda Solloway stated: “By investing in ground-breaking international projects like this one, we are helping UK businesses transform science fiction into commercial advantage, resulting in jobs, growth and innovation. This game-changing technology will ensure the UK continues to lead the world on telecommunications satellites and further bolster our growing space sector.”Elodie Viau, ESA’s Director of Telecommunications and Integrated Applications, stated: “I am proud to witness the successful launch of Eutelsat Quantum, which is the result of an ESA Partnership Project. ESA fosters innovation in the space industry in the UK and across Europe and Canada, enabling it to succeed in the highly competitive global telecommunications markets. Investing in space creates jobs and prosperity on Earth.”Ben Stocker, Director of Projects at Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd (SSTL), stated: “The EutelSat Quantum programme presented many challenges for SSTL to overcome during the development of the satellite system design, mechanical design, propulsion system and key subsystems within the satellite platform.“The skills and knowledge gained through successfully overcoming these challenges has enabled us to refine our engineering approach, especially for markets and applications where system reliability and availability are key requirements, and, with the continued support of the UK Space Agency and ESA, has put us in a very strong position to deliver our exciting upcoming pathfinder missions.”
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