Intelsat launches Galaxy 30 communications satellite

Intelsat launches Galaxy 30 communications satellite

17 August 2020 | Natalie Bannerman

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Intelsat confirms the successful launch of Galaxy 30, a geosynchronous communications satellite that will deliver high-performance television distribution to Intelsat’s North American customers.

Northrop Grumman’s Mission Extension Vehicle 2 (MEV-2) was also part of the same launch, with the Intelsat 10-02 satellite scheduled to become its first customer in early 2021.

Galaxy 30 is the first satellite in Intelsat’s Galaxy fleet refresh plan and will replace the existing Galaxy 14 fleet once live in early 2021. The Intelsat Galaxy fleet is a reliable and efficient media content distribution system in North America, offering customers an unmatched penetration of cable head-ends.

“Today’s launch of Galaxy 30 demonstrates Intelsat’s long-term commitment to our North American media customers,” said Stephen Spengler, CEO at Intelsat.

“At Intelsat, we’re constantly innovating, investing in and upgrading our satellite fleet and terrestrial infrastructure. Galaxy 30 is a great example of how we help our customers stay ahead of evolving consumer demands, today and well into the future.”

In addition, with C-, Ku-, Ka- and L-band capabilities Galaxy 30 is the first four-frequency Intelsat satellite.

As well as serving media business customers, Galaxy 30 will also offer broadband, mobility and network services to Intelsat mobile network operator, enterprise and government customers in North America.

Galaxy 30 is also carrying a U.S. Federal Aviation Administration hosted payload for Leidos.

“Today’s launch was especially important for Intelsat because Northrop Grumman’s innovative MEV-2 launched alongside Galaxy 30,” added Spengler.

“Intelsat was proud to partner with Northrop Grumman earlier this year to pioneer the future of in-space servicing with MEV-1 and our Intelsat 901 satellite. We’re looking forward to this next exciting servicing mission with Intelsat 10-02.”

Galaxy 30 plays a part in Intelsat’s US C-band spectrum transition plan, which is part of the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) 5G acceleration plan. Intelsat helping to transition and safeguard media services currently operating in the lower portion of the band to make way for 5G wireless services.

MEV-2 is due to dock with Intelsat 10-02 in 2021, enabling five additional years of high-performance life.

Intelsat 10-02 delivers media distribution and broadband services to Intelsat customers across Europe, the Middle East, Africa and South America.