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More Satellites, Spectrum, Orbital Slots for SES O3b Constellation

By | June 8, 2018
SES offices with antennas

SES offices with antennas. Photo Credit: SES

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has granted authorization to SES to serve the United States market using a significantly expanded O3b fleet in the Medium Earth Orbit (MEO). The FCC grant opens additional frequencies to SES for use in its Non-Geostationary Orbit (NGSO) constellation and enables it to deploy O3b mPower satellites into inclined and equatorial orbits, delivering full global pole-to-pole coverage. A total of 26 new O3b satellites are authorized, in addition to the 16 satellites already operational and in orbit.

The grant allows SES to add four satellites to its existing O3b constellation, which are scheduled for launch next year, and provides the framework for SES to triple its next-generation O3b mPower fleet by giving U.S. market access for another 22 super-powered satellites, of which seven are currently under construction and scheduled for launch starting in 2021.

The O3b mPower constellation will bring scale and flexibility to the proven O3b MEO model. The seven O3b mPower MEO satellites that SES has ordered already will have more than 30,000 dynamic, electronically-generated, fully-shapeable and steerable beams that can be shifted and switched in real time following customers’ needs.