Intelsat has announced that Intelsat 33e, the second of its EpicNG high throughput satellites (HTS), successfully completed all in-orbit testing and entered service on 29 January 2017.
Manufactured by Boeing and launched in August 2016, the company says I-33e is equipped with the most advanced digital payload on a commercial spacecraft.
With this flexible HTS payload design, I-33e, operating from 60° East, will extend the company’s HTS services in C-, Ku- and Ka-band to Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific, Mediterranean and Indian Ocean regions.
This will enable the delivery of broadband services to aeronautical service providers and government customers.
Its powerful spot beams will also enable the distribution of regionalised content for media customers operating in the region.
The customers committed to I-33e include in-flight entertainment and connectivity leaders Gogo and Panasonic Avionics.
Stephen Spengler, Chief Executive Officer, Intelsat, said: “The experience of implementing Intelsat EpicNG and bringing it to our customers has affirmed our beliefs about the potential of HTS.
“We have a dynamic, open and evolving platform that will increase in capability over time, providing a technology hedge for our customers that need to make investments today on which they can build for a decade of growth.
“We are delivering on the promise of HTS, and our design and strategy will advance our vision of unlocking access to new, larger and faster growing sectors for Intelsat and our customers.”
Skot Butler, President, Intelsat General Corporation, said: “Many U.S. government customers are eager to begin using Intelsat 33e.
“Testing previously conducted with I-29e using a small, flat-panel antenna designed for aeronautical applications confirmed that the EpicNG platform delivers superior performance for unmanned aircraft systems.”
EpicNG services were launched in March 2016 with I-29e, which is located at 310° East and offers a footprint spanning the Americas, the Caribbean, Eastern United States and the burgeoning North Atlantic region.
Three additional EpicNG satellites – I-32e, I-35e and I-37e – are scheduled for launch in 2017. EpicNG’s global footprint will be completed with Horizons 3e, which is to be stationed at 169° East with a launch planned in the second half of 2018.
Horizons 3e will extend EpicNG’s coverage to the Pacific Ocean Region and further expand EpicNG’s presence in Asia Pacific.