Mexsat System Passes Critical Design Review

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Boeing and its supplier partners recently completed the critical design review of the three-satellite Mexsat mobile satellite communications system that it is building for Mexican government.

“The successful completion of this milestone review verifies that MEXSAT will operate as promised to deliver greatly enhanced telecommunications for Mexico,” Craig Cooning, vice president and general manager of Boeing Space & Intelligent Systems, Seal Beach, Calif., said in a statement. “We continue to work diligently with our partners to progress toward launch of the first spacecraft in the constellation later this year.”

Mexsat consists of two Boeing-built 702HP satellites — Mexsat-1 and Mexsat-2 — and a third, smaller satellite — dubbed Mexsat-3 — that Boeing has hired Dulles, Va.-based Orbital Sciences Corp. to build. The two Boeing-built satellites will each weigh 5,800 kilograms, supply 14 kilowatts of power and carry a 22-meter L-band reflector.

Under a contract awarded in 2010, Boeing is the overall integrator for the Mexsat system, which in addition to the three satellites comprises two ground telemetry and control sites, associated network operations systems and reference user terminals.

Mexsat-3, which weighs about 3,000 kilograms, is slated to launch later this year as a co-passenger aboard Europe’s Ariane 5 rocket.

Mexsat-1 is expected to launch in 2013 or 2014 on an International Launch Services Proton rocket under a contract that Mexico’s Ministry of Communications and Transportation awarded to the Reston, Va.-based launch services provider in March. Boeing said the Mexsat system will be fully operational in 2014.