Advanced Television

EU unveils IRIS2 tender documents

March 27, 2023

The European Commission (EC) has published its tender specifications for its IRIS2 global satellite project. The EC wants the contract to be firmly in place within one year. The concept is for an EU-backed fully independent constellation of satellites.

The IRIS2 project is for a multi-orbit satellite network and managed as a concession by a private sector contractor which will almost certainly be a consortium.

The total cost has been stated as €6 billion spread over 12 years of operations. Some cash (likely €640 million) will come from ESA’s 22-member governments and these funds spread over a three-year period. The EC says that it has earmarked €380 million for development work and almost €1 billion for deployment and exploitation.

This is very much a ‘fast track’ project. The EC has set firm dates, such as:

· Parties interested in fulfilling the tender must respond by April 26th
· The evaluation by the EC takes place April 27th – May 17th
· Invitations to successful candidates, May 25th
· Deadline for proposal responses, July 31st
· Further evaluation, August 1st – October 13th
· Best offer from candidate suppliers, October 30th – December 13th
· Further evaluation, December 14th – January 25th 2024
· Award decision, January 26th 2024
· Contracts signed, February 9th 2024

Launchers must be European, says the document, while contracts will favour bidders with 30 per cent made up of small-to-midsize companies.

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