Press Release

SES ASTRA Awards Lockheed Martin Contract for Two Powerful A2100 Satellites

By SpaceRef Editor
June 17, 2003
Filed under , ,

Lockheed Martin
Commercial Space Systems (LMCSS), a business unit of the Lockheed Martin
Corporation , has been awarded a contract to build two A2100
geosynchronous satellites for SES ASTRA. The satellites, designated 1KR and
1L will provide distribution of direct-to-home broadcast services across
Europe following their scheduled launches in the second half of 2005 and 2006

“We are extremely gratified by the confidence SES ASTRA has placed in us,”
said Ted Gavrilis, president, Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems. “Our
flight-proven A2100 has provided a powerful, dependable solution for
telecommunications customers worldwide and we look forward to establishing a
long-term relationship with SES ASTRA.”

ASTRA 1KR, an all Ku-band spacecraft with 32 active transponders, will be
located at 19.2 degrees East longitude. The ASTRA 1L communications satellite
features a Ku/Ka- band payload with 31 active transponders and will be located
at 19.2 degrees East longitude. Both spacecraft will be based on the award
winning A2100AX platform, manufactured by Lockheed Martin Commercial Space
Systems, Newtown, Pa., and each will have a minimum service life of 15 years.

Ferdinand Kayser, President and CEO of SES ASTRA, is confident: “With
these state-of-the-art procurements, SES ASTRA cements not only the
competitive position of Europe’s top Continental European orbital slot well
into the next decade, but also reinforces the world’s most comprehensive
inter-satellite protection scheme at a single orbital position. We look
forward to working with Lockheed Martin on the ASTRA 1KR and ASTRA 1L missions
and are confident that the scheduled renewal of our fleet will further
strengthen our existing high standards of operational excellence and support
our commitment of offering state-of-the-art satellite services to our

The A2100 geostationary spacecraft is designed to meet a wide variety of
telecommunications needs ranging from high-power Ka, Ku and C-band fixed
satellite and direct broadcast services to high power mobile satellite
services using the L- and S-band frequency spectrum. The heritage A2100’s
modular design features flight-proven equipment, thus simplifying
construction, shortening delivery schedule, and increasing on-orbit

In recognition of the A2100’s reliability, Lockheed Martin recently
received an award for “Product of the Year,” by Frost & Sullivan. Calling it
“the most reliable and efficient of its class,” Frost & Sullivan recognized
the LMCSS-built A2100 satellite platform for “outstanding on-orbit reliability
record since it was first offered in 1996.”


The ASTRA Satellite System is Europe’s leading Direct-to-Home satellite
system, delivering television, radio as well as multimedia and Internet
services to more than 92 million Direct-to-Home and cable households. The
ASTRA satellite fleet currently comprises 13 satellites, transmitting in
excess of 1100 analogue and digital television and radio channels as well as
multimedia and Internet services.

ASTRA’s two prime orbital positions for DTH (Direct-To-Home) services are
19.2 degrees East and 28.2 degrees East. Professional services are offered
from the orbital positions of 23.5 degrees/24.2 degrees East and 5.2 degrees

SES ASTRA is an SES GLOBAL company, whose securities are listed on the
Stock Exchanges in Luxembourg and Frankfurt (SESG). SES GLOBAL wholly owns two
market leading satellite operators, SES ASTRA in Europe, and SES AMERICOM in
the US. The Company also holds strategic participations in first-class
regional satellite service providers, the SES GLOBAL partner companies,
including AsiaSat and AMERICOM ASIA-PACIFIC in Asia, Star One and Nahuelsat in
Latin America, and NSAB in Europe. Through these, SES GLOBAL can provide
outstanding satellite communications solutions via a fleet of 41 satellites
across the globe. Approximately 95 percent of the world’s population live
within the footprints of the SES GLOBAL satellite network. In addition, SES
GLOBAL is a shareholder in satellite technology companies Gilat Satellite
Networks Ltd., ND Satcom and SATLYNX. Additional info at:

About Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems

Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems markets, designs and builds
geostationary and non-geostationary telecommunications and remote sensing
satellites for customers worldwide. LMCSS is an operating unit of Lockheed
Martin Space Systems Company, one of the core business areas of the Lockheed
Martin Corporation. Lockheed Martin has a 41-year heritage of building
reliable spacecraft for commercial and military customers, having launched
more than 875 spacecraft and clocking nearly 1,500 years of on-orbit
performance experience.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, Lockheed Martin employs about
125,000 people worldwide and is a global enterprise principally engaged in the
research, design, development, manufacture and integration of advanced
technology systems, products, and services. The Corporation reported 2002
sales of $26.6 billion.

CONTACT: Steve Tatum of Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems,
+1-408-742-7531, or; or Yves Feltes of SES ASTRA,
+352-710-72-53-11, or

For more information about Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems, see
our web site at

SpaceRef staff editor.