Intelsat S.A., the world’s leading provider of fixed satellite services, announced today that it has commenced construction of the Intelsat 27 satellite (IS-27). IS-27 will have a hybrid C- and Ku-band design for media and network customers and will be augmented with a 20 x 25 kHz channel UHF payload for use in government applications. IS-27 is expected to be launched by December 2012 and will be placed in the Atlantic Ocean Region as a replacement for the Intelsat 805 satellite.
The IS-27 UHF hosted payload provides capability to complement the existing UHF Follow-On (UFO) and future Multi-User Objective System (MUOS) satellites. The payload supports DAMA and IW operations, and is digitally tunable and completely interoperable with existing terminals. “Intelsat has been providing commercial UHF services to the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) and our allies since the MARISAT and LEASAT programs. This payload continues that heritage and builds upon our current program with the Australian Defence Force,” said Don Brown, Vice President of Hosted Payloads for Intelsat General Corporation. “The IS-27 UHF payload will be functionally equivalent to the Navy’s UFO-11 satellite.”
In March 2010, the Navy submitted a UHF augmentation plan to Congress. A commercially hosted UHF payload was one of the solutions described to mitigate the shortfall in UHF capability. On May 10, 2010, SPAWAR issued a Sources Sought notice to industry requesting solutions for UHF augmentation.
“Our intended customers for this payload are the Navy and DoD tactical users, as well as NATO and other allies,” said Kay Sears, President of Intelsat General Corporation. “The requirements outlined in the Sources Sought were at the forefront of our payload design process. Intelsat’s payload will arrive at a critical time and location to sustain warfighter communications.” Sears continued, “We understand the military’s need for control and autonomy, and plan to offer our customers a variety of different contractual options for this UHF payload.”
Intelsat signed an agreement with Boeing Space and Intelligence Systems for manufacturing of IS-27 earlier this month. Intelsat authorized Boeing to proceed with the UHF hosted payload in the second quarter of 2010 for long-lead construction in order to meet a launch date in 2012.
Intelsat is the leading provider of fixed satellite services worldwide. For over 45 years, Intelsat has been delivering information and entertainment for many of the world’s leading media and network companies, multinational corporations, Internet Service Providers and governmental agencies. Intelsat’s satellite, teleport and fiber infrastructure is unmatched in the industry, setting the standard for transmissions of video, data and voice services. From the globalization of content and the proliferation of HD, to the expansion of cellular networks and broadband access, with Intelsat, advanced communications anywhere in the world are closer, by far.
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