Eutelsat’s Quantum, which claims to be ehe world’s most sophisticated commercial satellite, was successfully launched into orbit on July 30th aboard an Ariane 5 rocket.
The new features allow the satellite to be reconfigured from the ground and thus respond to changes in market demand over the lifetime of the craft. Quantum’s design life is a minimum of 15 years and under Eutelsat’s careful stewardship is likely to extend well beyond that date.
Quantum’s 8 communication beams can be modified and adjusted to change the craft’s footprint (within certain usual territorial limitations) the power of the beam’s signal and is hugely adaptable.
The craft will focus it beams on a wide region from west Africa to Asia and placed at 48 degrees East.
The Ariane 5 rocket placed the satellite into a high transfer orbit. Indeed, the craft was fully checked out within 3 hours of launch. It will enter commercial services later this year.
Pascal Homsy, Eutelsat’s CTO said: “Our congratulations to Arianespace and the Guiana Space Center teams for successfully launching the Eutelsat Quantum satellite. The collaboration between Eutelsat, ESA, the UK Space Agency and Airbus Defence and Space on this ambitious satellite programme has resulted in a world-first. Eutelsat Quantum will supply services with unprecedented in-orbit reconfigurability in coverage, frequency and power, allowing complete mission rehaul, at any orbital position. It is a testimony to the innovative spirit and expertise of the European Space industry.”
Also launched on the same Ariane rocket was Embratel’s Star One D2 craft. Built by Maxar Technologies which announced that the satellite is performing properly after launch. Maxar built this powerful communications satellite for Embratel, the largest satellite operator in Brazil and Latin America, and a business unit of Claro.