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IET Satcom 2018

Arianespace to launch BSAT-4b; marking the 10th satellite launch for B-SAT

(19 April 2018 - Arianespace) Arianespace announced today that it will launch BSAT-4b, under the term of a turnkey contract between B-SAT and Maxar’s SSL.

BSAT-4b will be launched by an Ariane 5 in 2020 from the Guiana Space Center, Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana, as part of a turnkey contract between the Japanese satellite operator B-SAT and the California-based satellite manufacturer SSL.

Since the creation of B-SAT, Arianespace has launched all nine of its satellites.

BSAT-4b will be the 10th satellite launched for B-SAT and the 32nd commercial geostationary satellite launch contract awarded to Arianespace in Japan.

Built by SSL, a Maxar Technologies company, using a 1300 platform, BSAT-4b will feature 24 Ku-band transponders. It will weigh about 3,520 kg at launch and is designed to have a nominal service life of at least 15 years. It will be positioned in geostationary orbit at 110 degrees East.

BSAT-4b will serve as a back-up of BSAT-4a, which was launched by Arianespace in September 2017. It will have the same Japan archipelago footprint as BSAT-4a, providing Direct-To-Home (DTH) television to ensure exceptional 4K/8K ultra-high definition (UHD) video distribution for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.

Following the signature of this contract, Stéphane Israël, CEO of Arianespace, said: “Only seven months after the successful launch of BSAT-4a in September 2017, we are honored to have been selected for the launch of BSAT-4b for our long-lasting partner B-SAT. This new Ariane 5 launch contract is a clear demonstration of the excellent relationships between Arianespace, SSL and the Japanese operator B-SAT, for whom we have launched the entire fleet of satellites since 1997. We are proud to serve one more time the Japanese market and to actively participate to the implementation of B-SAT’s ambitious projects, in partnership with SSL.”

About Arianespace

Arianespace uses space to make life better on Earth by providing launch services for all types of satellites into all orbits. It has orbited more than 570 satellites since 1980, using its family of three launchers, Ariane, Soyuz and Vega, from launch sites in French Guiana (South America) and Baikonur, Kazakhstan. Arianespace is headquartered in Evry, near Paris, and has a technical facility at the Guiana Space Center, Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana, plus local offices in Washington, D.C., Tokyo and Singapore. Arianespace is a subsidiary of ArianeGroup, which holds 74% of its share capital, with the balance held by 17 other shareholders from the European launcher industry.