Thales Alenia Space says it is finalising tests on the last batch of satellites for SES-owned O3b. The four satellites will help O3b increase connectivity to its clients, which include some of the world’s largest cruise ships including vessels operated by Carnival Cruise Lines and Royal Caribbean.
The satellites are having their final tests carried out at the Thales Alenia facility in Rome, and will conclude by the end of January. The satellites will then be flown to French Guiana in readiness for launch.
Launch of all four satellites is currently scheduled for March 2019, and they will join the existing fleet of 16 satellites to conclude the 20-satellite constellation.
SES is also building – with Boeing – a series of seven highly sophisticated O3b mPower satellites which will operate in Mid-Earth orbit. They should be ready to start launching in 2021 and will provide further expansion for the O3b fleet.