Press Release

Thales Selects Harris Corporation’s New Mesh Space Reflector for Inmarsat S-band Satellite

By SpaceRef Editor
March 16, 2015
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Harris Corporation (HRS) has been selected by Thales to provide a new advanced space antenna reflector that is half the weight of competing antennas, is impervious to vibration during launch, and reduces shadows that can block solar arrays on satellites. The announcement was made during Satellite 2015 being held March 16-19 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C.

Harris will deliver two fixed mesh reflectors which will be installed on the Inmarsat S-band satellite to create the world’s fastest most advanced aviation passenger connectivity services throughout the Europe.

The reflectors use Harris’ flight-proven mesh material in a patented arrangement, replacing traditional heavier solid graphite and tri-axial weave surfaces. Adapted from the company’s proven government and commercial unfurlable antenna products, the reflector’s smaller mass enables operators to add additional payloads or fuel to extend satellite life — resulting in increased revenue.

Harris has teamed with Vanguard Space Technologies, a world class graphite manufacturer, to build the two reflectors. They are produced with 3D-printed titanium components, a low-cost, high performance alternative to traditional manufacturing techniques.

“Thales’ selection of our fixed mesh reflectors demonstrates the confidence the commercial sector has in this unique Harris design,” said Bill Gattle, vice president and general manager, National Programs, Harris Government Communications Systems. “Harris has a long history of space antenna innovation, and these advanced reflectors expand our extensive portfolio, which ranges from two meters to 22 meters, to suit all customers’ needs.”    

About Vanguard Space Technologies

Vanguard specializes in the engineering, tooling, manufacturing, assembly and testing of high-performance, lightweight and precision aerospace structures. The company’s main product lines include antenna reflectors, spacecraft structures, instrument structures and solar power systems for commercial, defense, military and research satellites. Founded in 1994, and having more than 10 years of space heritage, Vanguard has extensive experience in composite design and analysis. The company also has a growing business in space power and optical and thermal products including Modular Solar Panels, Flexible Solar Panels, Shielded, Electromagnetically Clean Solar Panels, Solar Concentrators, Deployable Solar Arrays and Deployable Radiator Arrays.

About Harris Corporation

Harris is an international communications and information technology company serving government and commercial markets in more than 125 countries. Headquartered in Melbourne, Florida, the company has approximately $5 billion of annual revenue and about 13,000 employees — including 6,000 engineers and scientists. Harris is dedicated to developing best-in-class assured communications® products, systems, and services. Additional information about Harris Corporation is available at    

SpaceRef staff editor.