A Falcon 9 takes communication satellite Inmarsat-5 F4 into geostationary orbit
PI1281 – Backnang, 16.05.2017: When the countdown for the last of the four Inmarsat-5 satellites starts at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, it is just after 1 am Central European time. The engines ignite, the rocket lifts off, and shortly thereafter: frenetic cheers. The launch of the Falcon 9 rocket from the US space company SpaceX under the leadership of Elon Musk has been successful and the valuable cargo is on its journey.
The situation around the newly launched satellite of the British satellite communications company Inmarsat is an unprecedented one. When usually the service life of a satellite is planned and its tasks are clearly defined, the fourth Inmarsat-5 has been built as a so-called backup satellite. Apart from its actual area of application – to stand in when one of its predecessors falls out – Inmarsat-5 F4 could be used for an improved coverage of Europe with mobile services. But also for new business areas, which could develop during the course of its life time, the new satellite could be used in short term and thus represents an exciting business opportunity, according to Rupert Pearce, CEO of Inmarsat.
Like the first three, the fourth Inmarsat-5 was commissioned at and manufactured by the US aerospace company Boeing. The German high-tech company Tesat-Spacecom from Backnang near Stuttgart was a supplier for significant devices and modules, which are of great importance for the processing of incoming signals and their further processing within the satellite.
About Tesat: Over the course of five decades, Tesat-Spacecom has developed in-depth expertise in manufacturing of payload equipment for communication satellites and has established itself as a clear European market leader. On its 60,000m² premises in Backnang, Germany, 1,200 employees develop, assemble, integrate, and test systems and equipment for telecommunication via satellite. To date, more than 700 space projects have been completed. The accumulated in orbit lifetime heritage exceeds 250 million hours.
Further information for journalists:
Tesat-Spacecom GmbH & Co KG
Nina Backes, Communications
Gerberstrasse 49, D-71522 Backnang
You can find a video of the launch on http://www.inmarsat.com/i5f4/