SES has selected Arianespace to launch its high-power, high-throughput satellite SES-17 on an Ariane 5 in 2021 from the Guiana Space Center in Kourou, French Guiana.
SES-17 is a powerful satellite delivering 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 SES.
Weighing more than six metric tons at launch, SES-17 will be among the 10 largest telecom satellites launched by Arianespace since the company’s founding. SES-17 is the third all-electric satellite for which SES has chosen an Arianespace launch. 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 spotbeams; the orbital position of the spacecraft has not yet been disclosed.
“SES and Arianespace have developed an exceptional partnership over the past 30 years”, said Martin Halliwell, Chief Technology Officer of SES.
“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.”
“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,” noted Stéphane Israël, CEO of Arianespace.
“We are honoured to have been selected by SES 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. SES’ 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 underway to serve future SES missions.”
In a related development, SES has selected Arianespace for its fifth launch of four O3b satellites joining its O3b Medium Earth Orbit (MEO) fleet.
The mission on a Soyuz rocket will be conducted from the Guiana Space Center in Kourou, French Guiana, in 2019. The 12 satellites of the existing O3b fleet were orbited by Arianespace in 2013 and 2014; the next four satellites (13th to 16th) will be launched by Arianespace next year. The O3b fleet delivers low-latency data services provided by SES Networks, a business unit of SES.