SES orders new satellite for growth in Americas, North Atlantic

DetailsJoseph O'Halloran | 16 February 2015

Leading satellite operator SES has announced a spate of new orders to cash in on what it regards as growth opportunities in video neighbourhoods across the Americas and the North Atlantic region.

sesThe new SES-14 craft will be built by Airbus Space and Defence, is scheduled for launch in Q4 2017 and will operate at 47.5/48° West, where it will replace SES's satellite NSS-806 and add new capacity.

The hybrid craft will offer C-band and Ku-band wide-beam coverage, as well as Ku- and Ka-band high throughput satellite (HTS) coverage across the area and will fully rely on electric propulsion and will be equipped with an electric plasma propulsion system for orbit raising and in-orbit manoeuvres. Such a propulsion system will, says SES, deliver significant reduction in the weight of the satellite, enabling larger payloads to be carried. The new spacecraft will also feature a digital transparent processor (DTP), increasing the payload flexibility to provide customised bandwidth solutions to SES's customers.

SES-14's Ku-band wide beams will bring augmented capacity to serve growing direct-to-home (DTH) and direct-to-cable video neighbourhoods in the Americas and support existing VSAT services in both bands. The multi-spot Ku- and Ka-band beams will bring additional, high throughput capacity.

"The procurement of SES-14, the first high power satellite in the four-tonne class, extends our offering to customers in the Americas and further solidifies SES's positioning in these dynamic markets," explained SES chief technology officer Martin Halliwell. "The new spacecraft combines a large footprint with a powerful hybrid payload and significant spacecraft technology innovations. It will help us to capture important growth potential, address the needs of video and enterprise customers and support the development of next-generation video and next-generation data services. Furthermore, it complements O3b's high throughput satellite capacity in the medium earth orbit and helps us to deliver a truly unique and integrated offering."