[Via Satellite 10-28-2015] Eutelsat announced an agreement with Thales Alenia Space for a new High Throughput Satellite (HTS) based on the Spacebus Neo platform. The all-electric satellite is planned for launch in 2019, where it will provide broadband to users in Africa.
The baseline mission of the new satellite is to provide 75 Gbps of capacity across a network of 65 spot beams that together provide quasi-complete coverage of Sub-Saharan Africa. The satellite will address direct-to-user consumer and enterprise broadband services. It will also be used for community networks connected to Wi-Fi hotspots, mobile phone backhauling, and rural connectivity.
Thales Alenia Space developed the Spacebus Neo in partnership with the European and French space agencies. In the coming months, Eutelsat has the option to upscale the satellite to significantly increase overall throughput and service areas. Eutelsat’s African broadband business, including sales, will be managed by a newly created London-based affiliate. The new satellite follows a recent agreement to provide high throughput connectivity to Africa with Facebook on Spacecom’s Amos 6 satellite.
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