Call for media: briefing on SmallGEO

14 December 2016

A special briefing on SmallGEO, Europe’s versatile small telecom satellite platform, will be held on 18 January, after Director General Jan Woerner’s annual meeting of the press at ESA HQ, Paris.

The SmallGEO platform line offers satellite operators an entirely European solution in the smaller telecom satellite market by speeding up the production and testing processes, reducing costs and broadening the range of design options.

SmallGEO will be launched on its first mission in the early hours of 28 January (CET) on a Soyuz rocket from Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana.

It is carrying a telecommunications payload by Hispasat, which marks the first partnership between ESA and a Spanish operator, and will provide flight heritage for the first product by Germany’s OHB System AG as a prime contractor.

The launch will also be the first time a Soyuz has lifted a telecom satellite of more than three tonnes into geostationary transfer orbit from Kourou.

Named Hispasat 36W-1, it will then take itself into geostationary orbit over 36°W, where it will provide flexible broadband coverage over Europe, the Canary Islands and the Americas.

It will do so through its innovative Redsat regenerative processor, which offers better signal quality and speed by independently allocating up to four, reconfigurable beams at once, adapting the beams’ strength and location according to demand. Hispasat 36W-1 is the first satellite to use the processor.

Future SmallGEO platforms will carry the second node of the EDRS–SpaceDataHighway laser relay and ESA’s pioneering Electra electric propulsion mission.

The briefing will be shared by the Director General, the Director of Telecommunications & Integrated Applications, Magali Vaissiere, the Head of Telecommunications Satellite Programmes, Stéphane Lascar, Carlos Espinós, CEO of Hispasat, Marco Fuchs, CEO of OHB System AG, and Gerd Gruppe, Director of Space Administration at the DLR German Aerospace Center. It will be followed by a 20 minute Q&A session.

Attending the event

The event will take place 11:30–12:30 CET at ESA headquarters: 8 rue Mario Nikis, 75015 Paris, France.                                                  

Media representatives wishing to attend are requested to register at https://myconvento.com/public/event_register/index/1535923

The news conference will be livestreamed at www.esa.int. Media and the public may ask questions during the briefing on Twitter using the hashtag #askSmallGEO or by tweeting to @ESA.

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