Orbital Ships Satellite Built Under Subcontract to Boeing

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Satellite manufacturer Orbital Sciences Corp. of Dulles, Va., has completed construction of a telecommunications satellite for the Mexican government under subcontract to Boeing and shipped the craft to Kourou, French Guiana, in preparation for a scheduled Dec. 19 launch on an Ariane 5 rocket, the companies announced Nov. 26.

The Mexsat Bicentenario satellite is part of a three-satellite order placed by the Mexican government with Boeing Space and Intelligence Systems of Seal Beach, Calif. Boeing is responsible for building the other two satellites as well as the ground system and overall network integration under the $1 billion contract, which was announced in 2010.

Mexsat Bicentenario is based on Orbital’s Geostar 2 platform for relatively small geostationary telecommunications satellites. The satellite is designed to provide 3.5 kilowatts of power to its C- and Ku-band transponder payload.

The satellites being built by Boeing are based on that company’s 702HP platform and will each provide 14 kilowatts of power to L-band payloads for mobile communications. Those satellites are slated for launch in 2013 and 2014.