Boeing to Manufacture 7 MEO Satellites for SES’ New Network

Rendition of new O3b mPower network. Photo: SES.

Rendition of new O3b mPower network. Photo: SES.

SES has contracted Boeing to build seven Medium Earth Orbit (MEO) satellites for its new network system, O3b mPower. According to SES, O3b mPower will deliver fully managed services in the dynamic mobility, fixed data and government markets, using multiple terabits of throughput globally.

The constellation will have 30,000 shapeable and steerable beams that can be shifted and switched in real time to align with customers’ quickly changing growth opportunities, SES stated. O3b mPower will provide coverage to an area of nearly 400 million sq. km, four-fifths of the Earth’s surface.

Together with SES, O3b mPower partners will also invest in significant ground infrastructure innovations that converge storage, computing and routing resources with software intelligence and application-specific antennas and will introduce a new concept for the network endpoint: the small O3b mPower Customer Edge Terminal.

The MEO satellites will carry a Boeing-built digital payload and will use electronics from the company’s flight-proven 702 satellite platform. Boeing has designed the satellites to be launched up to four at a time in a stacked configuration, depending on the selected launch vehicle.

SES already operates the only Non-Geostationary Orbit (NGSO) broadband system with 12 MEO satellites, which deliver high-throughput low latency connectivity, and will be launching another eight MEO satellites in 2018 and 2019. O3b mPower leverages the same building blocks with dramatically increased throughput, coverage and flexibility, SES stated.

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