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New-generation satellite EUTELSAT KONNECT VHTS built by Thales Alenia Space heading to Kourou launch site

By Keith Cowing
Press Release
Thales Alenia Space
July 21, 2022
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New-generation satellite EUTELSAT KONNECT VHTS built by Thales Alenia Space heading to Kourou launch site
Thales Alenia Space

EUTELSAT KONNECT VHTS satellite, the state-of-the-art and largest satellite ever put into orbit by international operator Eutelsat Communications (Euronext Paris: ETL) is now on its way to Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana, by boat, for a launch planned 6 September 2022 on board an Ariane 5 rocket.

EUTELSAT KONNECT VHTS, a very high throughput satellite built by Thales Alenia Space, is to deliver high-speed broadband and mobile connectivity across Europe. With a Ka-band capacity of 500 Gbps, EUTELSAT KONNECT VHTS is the largest geostationary satellite ever ordered to date in Europe and will embark the most powerful on-board digital processor, offering capacity allocation flexibility and an optimal spectrum use.

This new-generation satellite, offering a capacity seven times that of its brother satellite EUTELSAT KONNECT launched in 2020, comes with several major firmly committed customers for satellite broadband connectivity, namely Orange via its Nordnet affiliate for the French coverage, Telecom Italia Mobile over Italy and Thales Alenia Space to serve notably the government connectivity services. These commitments showcase the ability of satellites to provide an attractive solution for bridging the digital divide, at a time when access to connectivity plays a major role in both economic and social development.

Pascal Homsy, Chief Technical Officer at Eutelsat, said: “With EUTELSAT KONNECT VHTS we are bringing connectivity to a next level. Defying the odds, it is the most powerful satellite to join the Eutelsat fleet. It will deliver 230 beams over Western Europe and is equipped with a Digital Transparent Processor of 5th generation which will give a considerable advantage in terms of frequency flexibility onboard. A state-of-the-art piece of the finest technology built by our partners Thales Alenia Space that I would like to hereby acknowledge as EUTELSAT KONNECT VHTS sets off for the Guiana Space Center.”

Marc Henri Serre, EVP Telecommunications at Thales Alenia Space, added: “EUTELSAT KONNECT VHTS is the satellite of all superlatives for a crucial mission aiming to bridge the digital divide by providing connectivity everywhere in Europe. It is the most capacitive satellite ever built by Thales Alenia Space and our teams provided all the state-of-the art technologies to make it possible. We are really proud to see it ready for shipment to the launch pad and are eager to start the launch campaign.”

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About Eutelsat Communications

Founded in 1977, Eutelsat Communications is one of the world’s leading satellite operators. With a global fleet of satellites and associated ground infrastructure, Eutelsat enables clients across Video, Data, Government, Fixed and Mobile Broadband markets to communicate effectively to their customers, irrespective of their location. Around 7,000 television channels operated by leading media groups are broadcast by Eutelsat to one billion viewers equipped for DTH reception or connected to terrestrial networks. Committed to promoting all facets of sustainable development across its business activities, Eutelsat leverages its in-orbit resources to help bridge the digital divide while maintaining a safe and uncluttered space environment. As an attractive and socially responsible employer, Eutelsat assembles 1,200 men and women from 50 countries who are dedicated to delivering the highest quality of service.

Eutelsat Communications is listed on the Euronext Paris Stock Exchange (ticker: ETL).

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