[Satellite TODAY 10-01-12] The European Defense Agency (EDA) has awarded a three-year contract to Astrium to provide commercial Ku-, Ka- and C-band satellite communications capacity for the defense ministries of France, Italy, Poland, Romania and the United Kingdom, Astrium confirmed Oct. 1.
EDA’s European Satellite Communications Procurement Cell (ESCPC) will manage the contract. Astrium Services also will offer associated value-added services, including the lease of terminals, anchoring and worldwide backhauling. The ESCPC will allow the European Union member states to pool their needs, purchase, and even switch satellite communication capacity between themselves.
The three-year pilot program is valued at 2.3 million euros ($3 million). Astrium Services will then be responsible to negotiate a lower price with the satellite bandwidth provider as an incentive.
“As a commercial company and a pioneer in providing milsatcoms to governments and defence ministries, we are very proud to be the first to provide commercial satellite communications to the European Defense Agency through such an innovative scheme,” Astrium Services CEO Eric Béranger said in a statement. “Being European, Astrium Services is fully engaged in making a significant contribution to European defense.”