SES selects Arianespace for launch of SES-17 satellite

An artist's impression of the SES-17 satellite.
An artist’s impression of the SES-17 satellite.

SES has selected Arianespace to launch its high-power, high-throughput Ku-band satellite SES-17 on an Ariane 5 in 2021 from Kourou, French Guiana.

The satellite will deliver high-speed inflight connectivity and high-powered data services over the Americas and the Atlantic Ocean.

SES-17 is the 53rd satellite entrusted to Arianespace for launch by the company.

Weighing more than six metric tonnes at launch, it will be among the 10 largest telecom satellites launched by Arianespace since the company’s founding.

The satellite built by Thales Alenia Space is fitted with an electric propulsion system for orbital positioning and station-keeping; its payload comprises 200 Ka-band spot beams; the orbital position of the spacecraft has not yet been disclosed.

Martin Halliwell, Chief Technology Officer of SES, said: “SES and Arianespace have developed an exceptional partnership over the past 30 years.

With this launch, we build on that relationship and underline our commitment to the European space industry.

Together with today’s agreement with Arianespace to launch another four spacecraft of our O3b constellation on Soyuz in 2019, we are satisfied to conclude two important contracts with Arianespace giving us the necessary and reliable access to space that we need to further develop and drive our business.”

Stéphane Israël, CEO of Arianespace, said: “This latest contract reflects the excellent relations built between Arianespace and SES over the past three decades. Our order book speaks for itself, with now 10 satellites to be launched for SES by 2021.

We are honoured to have been selected for the launch of the new-generation SES-17 – an impressively sized, all-electric satellite – which shows Arianespace’s ability to adapt to customers’ evolving requirements.

The company’s continued trust in Arianespace is a clear demonstration that our Ariane 5 heavy-lift launcher is keeping pace with these changing technologies, prior to the advent of our new-generation Ariane 6 launch vehicle – for which discussions are under way to serve future missions.”

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