Intelsat has ordered one of its largest-ever satellites, and has chosen Boeing as its lead contractor. Boeing will build Intelsat 35e, one of Intelsat’s EPIC-branded next-generation craft.
This particular EPIC is being built on one of Boeing’s 702MP platforms, and Intelsat has specified that the satellite must be able to be launched on any of the world’s main rocket suppliers, Atlas, Ariane, Sea Launch, SpaceX Falcon and even a Sea Launch, and thereby ensuring that the actual launch will not be held up by lack of a launch vehicle.
Intelsat has been a loyal customer for Boeing, and this order represents the 9th satellite supplied by the California-based satellite builder.
“Our mission is to provide satellite-based infrastructure that can support our customers’ increasing demands for bandwidth – from broadband connections for commercial planes to broadcasts of ultra-high definition television signals,” said Thierry Guillemin, Intelsat executive vice president and chief technical officer. “As a result, we challenge our satellite manufacturers to deliver innovative designs and technology on time and on budget.
“Intelsat has a long history with Boeing,” Guillemin continued, “and our relationship continues to grow given Boeing’s ability to deliver satellites that meet our demanding design and performance specifications.”
“Boeing has provided satellites to Intelsat for many years,” said Craig Cooning, president of Boeing Network & Space Systems. “As Intelsat celebrates the 50th anniversary of its founding this year, we’re pleased to continue our collaboration with the building of the newest satellite, IS-35e. The Boeing-built Intelsat Epic 702MPs will help take Intelsat to the next level, ensuring a bright future for one of our most trusted partners.”
There’s no precise delivery date quoted by either Intelsat or Boeing, however Intelsat’s first ‘EPIC’ craft is due for launch in the second half of next year.