World Satellite Business Week
Commercial orders of geostationary communications satellites have reached double-digits for the first time since 2016, but a return to former buying rates remains unlikely, experts say.
Eutelsat Chief Executive Rodolphe Belmer said his company decided last week to leave the C-Band Alliance because the group didn’t pay sufficient attention to the company’s concerns.
Not so long ago, satellite operators treated inflight connectivity as a niche market — a good way to sell off capacity not already soaked up by more lucrative television broadcast, government and maritime customers.
SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell, speaking Sept. 13 at the World Satellite Business Week Conference in Paris, said Falcon 9 could return to flight this year, although SpaceX has yet to determine what caused the Sept. 1 explosion.
The French export-credit agency, Coface, on Sept. 13 said it was examining the OneWeb global internet-delivery constellation with an open mind but that it remains unclear whether the agency could guarantee a large portion of OneWeb’s debt.
Virgin Galactic announced a contract for four launches of satellites for a planned communications constellation.
International Launch Services on Sept. 13 announced two new variants of its Proton rocket that will be sized to launch smaller geostationary satellites.
Satellite fleet operator SES, in a direct challenge to competitors ViaSat, Eutelsat and Inmarsat, is investing $500 million in a large, all-Ka-band spot beam high-throughput satellite to launch over the Americas in 2020 for aeronautical connectivity and other mobility applications, industry officials said.