Third batch of four O3b satellites successfully launched
Cannes, December 18, 2014 – The third batch of four satellites in the O3b medium Earth orbit (MEO) constellation, operated by O3b Networks, was successfully launched by Arianespace on December 18 from French Guiana using a Soyuz rocket.
The first four satellites have been in orbit since June 2013, while the second batch, launched on July 10, 2014. The constellation of 8 became fully operational in September. The services offered by these eight satellites are highly successful – confirming the validity of the O3b design based on high-throughput and low latency.
Positioned at an altitude of 8,062 kilometers (about 5,000 miles), four times closer to the earth than geostationary satellites, these Ka-band satellites offer high speed, low-latency connectivity to Internet and telecommunications service providers in emerging markets. O3b Networks supplies trunking and mobile backhaul connectivity services to telecom operators and service providers at speeds comparable to those offered by fiber-optic networks.
Jean Loïc Galle, CEO of Thales Alenia Space said: “This launch is a new major step in the deployment of the O3b constellation and provides further proof of Thales Alenia Space's leadership in telecom constellations. We are very proud to be working with our customer O3b on this exciting endeavor that provides telecommunications services and high-speed Internet connectivity to billions of people who were previously unable to access broadband services.”
Steve Collar, CEO of O3b said: “O3b already provides connections to customers who bring life changing connectivity in remote places such as Papua New Guinea, East Timor, The Cook Islands, the Democratic Republic of Congo and South Sudan and customer feedback has been excellent. O3b Networks is definitively a “game changer” for Internet connectivity and we are pleased to have a strong partnership with Thales Alenia Space to provide the O3b satellites”.
About Thales Alenia Space
Thales Alenia Space, a joint venture between Thales (67%) and Finmeccanica (33%), is a key European player in space telecommunications, navigation, Earth observation, exploration and orbital infrastructures. Thales Alenia Space and Telespazio form the two parent companies' “Space Alliance”, which offers a complete range of services and solutions. Because of its unrivaled expertise in dual (civil/military) missions, constellations, flexible payloads, altimetry, meteorology and high-resolution optical and radar instruments, Thales Alenia Space is the natural partner to countries that want to expand their space program. The company posted consolidated revenues in excess of 2 billion euros in 2013, and has 7,500 employees in six countries. www.thalesaleniaspace.com
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