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Inmarsat to be 1st Commercial Customer for Mitsubishi H3 Launch Vehicle

By Annamarie Nyirady | December 6, 2018
Artist rendition of MHI H3 rocket. Photo: JAXA

Artist rendition of MHI H3 rocket. Photo: JAXA

Inmarsat entered into an agreement with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) to be the first commercial customer to place an order for the new H3 launch vehicle. The maiden flight of H3 is scheduled for 2020 with Inmarsat planning to deploy the new launch vehicle after 2022.

This is the second agreement entered by Inmarsat and MHI, following the launch services contract awarded to MHI’s H-IIA Launch Vehicle in 2017. These agreements underline the growing partnership between the two companies in the area of launch services.

“Today, development of the H3 Launch Vehicle is proceeding steadily forward under the leadership of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), with MHI serving as primary contractor working closely with key component manufacturers,” MHI Vice President (VP) and Senior General Manager for Space Systems Masahiro Atsumi. “We greatly appreciate the high evaluation made by Inmarsat during this development phase and, working closely with JAXA and government agencies, we will do everything possible to ensure that development results in a new flagship launch vehicle fully meeting the customer’s high expectations.”