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Intelsat to build two software-defined satellites with Thales

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Intelsat is working with Thales Alenia Space to "blanket the Earth with software-defined satellites".

The two are building two software-defined satellites named Intelsat 42 (IS-42) and Intelsat 43 (IS-43) to advance Intelsat’s global fabric of software-defined GEO connectivity as part of its 5G software-defined network.

The two next-generation software-defined satellites are scheduled to be in service in 2025 and will join two Airbus constructed software-defined satellites, Intelsat 42 (IS-42) and Intelsat 43 (IS-43), announced January 8, 2021.

Stephen Spengler, the outgoing CEO of Intelsat, said: “Intelsat’s standards-based, open-architecture network design facilitates the incorporation of the best technology at any given time, further bolstering network resiliency. With the addition of Intelsat 41 and Intelsat 44, in partnership with Thales Alenia Space, Intelsat will blanket the earth with software-defined satellites, progressing the world’s first global 5G software-defined network, designed to unify the global telecoms ecosystem.”

Intelsat 41 and Intelsat 44 will be based on the Space Inspire product line by Thales Alenia Space. This allows for telecommunications mission and services reconfiguration; instant in-orbit adjustment to broadband connectivity demand; and superior video broadcasting performance while maximising the effective use of the satellite resources.

Hervé Derrey, CEO of Thales Alenia Space added: “Our relationship with Intelsat has been so meaningful knowing that our attractive Space Inspire software-defined solution will contribute to the realization of Intelsat’s global 5G software-defined unified network.

“We are proud that our advanced satellite technology will play a significant role in Intelsat’s vision to reimagine the global telecoms ecosystem.”

The artist’s impression pictured shows IS-41 and IS-44, with their corresponding antennas configuration

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